Photos: Inside Vocus' Perth iX data centre

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Photos: Inside Vocus' Perth iX data centre

Floor-to-ceiling windows in Perth's CBD.

West Australian data centre Perth iX upgraded some of its power and cooling infrastructure this month, as a major customer vacated 30 racks in the near-capacity Perth CBD data centre.

The co-location facility, which was established for $3.6 million in 2001, has operated near its 199-rack capacity for years, according to general manager of operations Adam Gardner.

It was purchased by voice and data network operator Vocus Communications for just under $6.3 million in March 2011, after selling sister facility Metro iX to Datacom in May 2010.

New condensers and an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) were installed in the 385-square-metre facility as part of Perth iX’s $750,000 maintenance spend this year.

Gardner explained that an unnamed customer would move into its own, new data centre in mid-July. Half of the vacated, 4kW racks had already been pre-sold.

Security, availability and reliability were key concerns for the Type-1 facility, which served 220 customers, including governments, financial services organisations, and other corporations with data worth millions, he said.

Perth iX sits on two separate Western Power grids, including a hospital grid. UPS systems can run the full data centre for up to 15 minutes during a power outage while a diesel generator kicks in.

The generator is expected to run for eight hours before requiring more fuel. Gardner said Perth iX’s longest power outage to date lasted five hours, when its host building, the ‘Quadrant’, underwent maintenance.

“We never lose power here,” he said, boasting of a long-term uptime of 99.9977 percent and high customer retention rate.

The facility employs cold-aisle containment and operates at about 22 degrees Celsius. Gardner said the “legacy site” did not have a power usage effectiveness (PUE) figure.

Some power and cables are provided from overhead trays; power, data wiring and air-conditioning is also delivered from under a raised floor.

The floor, which is between 200 to 1,200mm above street-level, also serves to prevent ram-raid attacks.

Perth iX’s curved, floor-to-ceiling windows are smash- and bullet-resistant, and visitors are subjected to a three-factor authentication process involving biometrics, a code, and swipe card.

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