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​NZ-made portable data centre aims to undercut traditional vendors by $900K

​NZ-made portable data centre aims to undercut traditional vendors by $900K

“We’ve been thinking about data centres in a whole new way."

IT Power has unveiled a flexible alternative to catering for the IT infrastructure needs of New Zealand organisations, aiming to knock as much as $900,000 off traditional data centre pricing.

Billed as the datablok, the product is a fully portable data centre housed within a ISO shipping container.

“We’ve been thinking about data centres in a whole new way,” says Jason Lewis, Director, IT Power.

“What we’ve created is a solution that offers responsiveness, high availability and efficiency, all at an affordable cost. You move, and your ICT infrastructure moves with you.”

Lewis says IT Power custom manufactures each datablok to suit the client’s needs, starting with a 10, 20, 40 or 45 foot ISO shipping container and installing access, insulation, power, cooling, security and remote management/monitoring as required by the client.

In addition, tault tolerance, rack power density, internal configuration and other specific client needs are all incorporated in the final design.

For Lewis, the result is a data centre that can be transported anytime, anywhere in the world and stored in any environment: hot, cold, wet or dry - the datablok is weather-proof, shock-proof, seismically-restrained, fire resistant and climate-controlled.

Claiming it to be “cheaper and faster” to build than a traditional “bricks and mortar” data centre and more secure than outsourcing to the cloud, Lewis believes the datablok offers organisations a new level of flexibility and costs a fraction of similar solutions from multi-national vendors.

“Pricing from multi-national vendors typically starts at around $1 million, whereas we produce a datablok from $100,000 including an integrated standby generator, all dependent on the client’s specifications,” he adds.

“The other advantage is that unlike many multi-national vendors, when it comes to the components used to build your datablok, we’re vendor agnostic.

“When you choose a datablok, you get best-of-breed and fit-for-purpose hardware, locally supported and in whatever layout you wish.”

Lewis says New Zealand and Asia-Pacific organisations are already expressing an interest in the datablok from a risk management perspective - the unit can be raised and placed on seismic restraint pads to protect core services from seismic events, liquefaction and flooding.

Going forward, Hawkes Bay communications provider Unison will soon become the first New Zealand company to begin using one.

Lewis says the datablok can also be deployed by air, road or sea as a production facility, disaster/emergency response or to support government, NGO or defence operations.

Other uses include oil and gas exploration, sports events or movie-making, where there is a need to move and operate critical ICT equipment between different locations.

“A datablok typically takes only 8 to 12 weeks to construct,” he adds.

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