As our first data hall reaches shell completion, and technical installations can begin in earnest, progress in the new facility is set to rocket towards completion, expected before Christmas this year.
We have reached a pivotal stage in our progress this month (September 2014), as many of the tasks which have been required to push forwards with larger works are now completed. Although the state of the facility indicates to our readers that we are still deep in the middle of the project, we are in fact not that far away from having the first racks deployed in the data hall, ahead of building final elements such as cold corridor enclosures and finishing touches.
There have been dramatic leaps forward this week with regards to the first data halls readiness for technical installations. The ceiling has now been installed, creating the air plenum above which will handle the air in this first hall.
We apologise for the grainy photographs; light in the data halls is now extremely limited, as they have been fully enclosed. This makes photography difficult until our lighting system is online.
The cold corridor enclosure reached completion in terms of its structure this week. Apart from the installation of the cooling stacks, all that remains is to fit the louvred panels, decorate the corridor using climate resistant paints, and tank the floor with moisture resistant rubber.
Week 28 has seen further progress on the cold corridor enclosure, though focus has also been turned to other areas of the facility as various elements of the project near completion.
The cold corridor enclosure wall alone is comprised of over 3 tonnes of fireboard, which gives an indication of the sheer quantity of raw materials involved in building an entire data centre. Each 3 metre sheet is just shy of 50kgs.
The cold corridor enclosure has taken serious shape this week, which is the final piece of structural work to take place ahead of final decoration and technical installations in the data hall areas. It is fair to say that this is a highly complex structure, as its apertures have been designed to have very small tolerances, and must be positioned incredibly accurately to allow the cooling system to function as intended.
Both extraction and inlet apertures are different sizes, due to the design of air flow and pressure control in the facility. The positioning of the cooling stacks behind each set of apertures has been carefully designed to manage data hall air based on its position and its cooling load.
The cold corridor enclosure is also having highly specialist cladding and wall coverings applied to it. While the face which is on show in the data hall will be made up of basic plaster boards, the internal surfaces are clad in mounting timber and dual function fire and moisture resistant board. The internal surface will also have a highly resilient paint applied for added resistance to the cold air that it will be processing.
No fans or ducting inlets / outlets will be on show in the data hall, as they all handle air in the plenum above the ceiling grid.