Automation gets order from CERN


Delivery of 10 Prefabricated Datacenter Modules for 2 CERN experiments

Halle-based Automation wins an order for the expansion of the datacenters for 2 experiments at CERN. Thanks to the 10 modules, more information can be collected and managed at a reasonable cost and within a short delivery period. Furthermore, the modules will be installed on top of the experiments (Near Source).

It is beyond doubt that CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, uses HPC (High Performance Compute) for its data processing and storage. The scientific and technical staff develop, build and monitor the perfect functioning of the particle accelerators. In addition, they provide support for the preparation, performance, analysis and interpretation of data from complex experiments.

The ALICE and LHCb experiments at CERN have decided not to build new or additional (traditional) datacenters, but to use Prefabricated Datacenter Modules to carry out the upgrades instead.

The advantages of these modules are obvious:

  • Fast, flexible and efficient solution that complies with the highest quality standards
  • A solution that complies to the high performance requirements of CERN-ICT
  • 12-week delivery period
  • Optimized performance configurations when it comes to power, density and energy
  • Near Source: the modules are installed on top of the experiments, which implies a huge saving on the transfer of data

Each Prefabricated Datacenter provides a 2 MW net IT load with an estimated annual average pPUE below 1.075. Herewith the Automation SAFE-ECO solution achieves a value far below the 1.10 pPUE requirement in terms of energy efficiency thanks to the integration of a cooling system that is specifically adapted to the weather conditions in Central Europe.
By way of comparison: a traditional datacenter with a power of 2 MW has a pPUE between 1.35 and 1.8. Or, in other words: a traditional datacenter consumes 25% more energy than a Prefabricated Datacenter.

A wide range of segments and businesses are already using Prefabricated Datacenter Modules:

  • For Proximus the SAFE ECO system with ‘fresh air’ is currently being installed to support the FTTH project. The existing buildings will gradually be replaced with the modules, which, in addition, comply to the severest noise-level criteria for material in residential areas.
  • 2 SAFE ECO ‘Indirect Evaporative Cooling’ units have already been installed in Mainz, Germany. The energy saving for this customer is estimated at at least €90,000 per year for a 100 KW net IT load datacenter. There is also room to install 8 extra modules.

Furthermore, 600 personalized modules have been installed all over the world in a wide range of industries and applications, such as Industrial IoT, Telco, HPC and ECO.

The first 2 CERN modules will be delivered in September.