The difference between purpose-built facilities & retrofit buildings
Purpose-built data centers (PBDC) are the most reliable and efficient facilities available. Although typically priced higher than other non-PBDCs, the value that is received from these facilities far exceeds that of a building retrofitted for the same purpose. Since your business, like most others, relies on your servers to conduct everyday business operations, it is vital that they remain up and available 24x7x365.
Facilities that are purpose-built go beyond the typical data center design. One area of proof is that they utilize a recessed slab foundation with raised floors throughout the facility. This concrete slab is built on caisson pier foundations driven into bedrock, which provides a solid foundation to protect the facility against earthquake and flood damage. It also allows personnel to easily move equipment into the colocation facility at ground level. In contrast, retrofitted buildings often require equipment to be hauled up a ramp to a raised floor. This is dangerous, difficult and slow.
Advantages of raised-floor construction
The foundation is just the first step to protecting your data in a colocation facility. Raised tile floors are installed three feet above the recessed slab, creating a large space between the concrete foundation and the tiles. This void is a safe and secure space to house data and power cables. It also allows air to flow freely throughout the building. Facility operators distribute cold air wherever customers need it through perforated floor tiles. In colocation centers that have carefully regulated hot air segregation, a raised-floor cold air distribution system is extremely efficient and cost effective. Only purpose-built colocation facilities are designed to offer advanced climate control features that are tailored to the customer’s needs. Since a single building accommodates multiple customers’ specific needs, quality colocation facilities offer exceptional service at a competitive price.
Look for a colocation facility utilizing 50 ton Computer Room Air Handler (CRAH) units. These units supply enough cooling to support complete data center operations at a reasonable price. CRAH units are engineered for efficiency. In a building with raised floors, they move chilled air through aisles and to racks very effectively.
Premium floor tiles provide added strength
The best colocation facilities invest in the highest-quality floor tiles. These tiles come at a higher price,
but each one is filled with concrete and is capable of withstanding a load of 2,500 pounds on any one square inch of the tile. To achieve the highest possible load rating, every corner of every tile sits on pedestals. The edges of the tiles are supported by stringers. This construction keeps the floor tiles straight, aligned and level with each other.
A premium, purpose-built colocation facility offers valuable amenities to consider when you compare the price of data storage centers. Customers benefit from easy, ground-level access for equipment installation and removal. Energy efficient climate controls are supported by the very best equipment and vendors. Exceptional planning and construction techniques guarantee maximum uptime and performance. These features combine to create a world-class facility that protects against natural threats, but is flexible to respond to customers’ needs.
Thomas Hughes encourages any business looking for data center services or colocation pricing to select purpose built facilities. His articles are intended to educate readers about the advatanges of purpose built facilities and the consequences of using retrofitted options.