Australia's biggest datacentre comes to Brisbane

Summary:Engineering giant Emerson and datacentre company Digital Sense have signed a deal to build what they claim is Australia's largest high-density datacentre, totalling 10,000 square metres and drawing a maximum of 196 megawatts of power.

Engineering giant Emerson and datacentre company Digital Sense have signed a deal to build what they claim is Australia's largest high-density datacentre, totalling 10,000 square metres and drawing a maximum of 196 megawatts of power.

Dubbed "Data Centre City", the planned datacentre will be built near Kenmore outside Brisbane, with a maximum capacity of 6,500 watts per square metre. Digital Sense hopes the first parts of Data Centre City will come online late this year.

The pair are also working on a smaller datacentre in Kenmore, totalling 1,600 square metres and drawing 2000 watts per square metre, which is scheduled for completion this July.

According to Michael Tran, director of Digital Sense, demand is outstripping supply for outsourced datacentres.

Tran said in order to meet the power demand of Data Centre City -- a maximum of 192 megawatts -- the facility will need to be connected to Queensland's largest substation.

However, Tran said he is unsure whether Data Centre City would ever meet full capacity. "One thing we are definitely sure of is that the datacentre market is continuing to grow at a large rate," he noted.

In order to find the best technology for Data Centre City, Tran travelled to the Sun Microsystems' datacentre in Santa Clara, "which was a fantastic site," he said. "It had multiple different competing solutions for best practise into a single facility, and benchmarked them against each other. We got to see all the gear in action."

Green issues are important for Data Centre City, with the facility using almost 50 percent of its power consumption for cooling, Tran said.

"The first and foremost is the water issue -- we wanted to release ourselves from utilising the town water supply and [using] potentially hundreds of thousands of litres of water just through evaporation."

Tran said that Data Centre City also offers green power -- power from renewable sources -- to those companies that demand it.

"We would love to provide green power to all our clients as a default, but the cost of green power these days is just too expensive on this scale ... it's around three times as expensive," Tran said.

Topics: Data Centers, Emerging Tech

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