Rittal New Zealand - Orion Data Centre Container

As Christchurch seeks to rebuild itself in the wake of disastrous earthquakes and the harrowing threat of more to come, Orion (owner and operator of the greater Christchurch electricity distribution network) work tirelessly to keep Christchurch powered. In search of the best protection for sensitive computer facilities, Orion commissioned Rittal to supply a transportable Data Centre container with direct free cooling technology to house their data centre technology.

Surviving the devastation of three major earth quakes in the past ten months, Orion acts as a centre city bunker. The latest 6.3 magnitude aftershock saw 50 more buildings crumble around it. Orion is the only safe and functioning building in the city centre. Within the grounds are Orion's computer facilities - the facilities building is damaged but the equipment is still functioning. To ensure uncompromised IT uptime Orion has chosen Rittal to provide a robust modular Outdoor Data Centre for sensitive computer equipment.

The main computer facility at Orion was badly affected. The facility has been maintained with Rittal racks and Rittal LCP cooling -- all of which survived with no damage or interruption to the service. It is vital for Orion that they commission a secure, transportable facility to fortify their sensitive electronics. Orion chose the RDCC (Rittal Data Centre Container) for its pre-fabricated and plug and play concept, as well as its ability to be moved as required. The project duration on site is very short, within a week the RDCC is up and running. Only data and power cables are required to start the RDCC. "It was also important that we chose a technology supplier we could trust. Orion is already using Rittal's German engineered solutions for data racks and power infrastructure in the existing facility -- the unit was a good fit," said Neville Digby, Senior Systems Engineer for Orion. Orion sought input from a consultant to advise the best possible cooling solutions.

They deliberately chose to move away from chilled water in favour of the Rittal ambient air DFC units (Direct Free Cooling with supporting DX cooling during hot days), ensuring a lower PUE of approximately 1.3.

All IT infrastructures are integrated in the robust outdoor module, there are no outer installations required. Rittal used a custom built 10x3m container that met the end users requirements. The RDCC comes with 40kW of direct free cooling, fully redundant UPS with two hours battery backup, completely remote IP based management and the Novec1230 gas extinguishing system (DET-AC XL) with integrated early active smoke detection. All data and power cables are managed in a 300mm high raised floor with heavy duty rating. The weather and fire proof cable and pipe entry ducts ensure very high physical security. The RDCC was pre-fabricated and pre-tested in Rittal's Data Centre Container facility in Germany.

Overall Orion spoke highly of the product and service provided by Rittal, "Rittal have an extraordinary range of products and options, and they know them so well. We were able to get a complete solution for our data centre infrastructure and security needs from one supplier -- a much simpler, more time efficient process that ensures all products work seamlessly together."