Editor's Picks

June 1, 2017
RagingWire Data Centers, Inc. and its parent company NTT Communications (NTT Com) were joined by 500 business and civic leaders on April 19 to celebrate the opening of the Dallas TX1 Data Center, a 230,000-square-foot facility designed to house computing systems of large enterprises and hyperscale cloud companies.

RagingWire, NTT Com host data center ribbon cutting

RagingWire Data Centers, Inc. and its parent company NTT Communications (NTT Com) were joined by 500 business and civic leaders on April 19 to celebrate the opening of the Dallas TX1 Data Center, a 230,000-square-foot facility designed to house computing systems of large enterprises and hyperscale cloud companies.

Designed and built to withstand an EF3 tornado of 136 mph, and as part of NTT Com’s global data center platform, which comprises 140 facilities in 19 countries and regions under the Nexcenter brand, “RagingWire’s new Dallas TX1 Data Center is ‘Texas-ready’ and world-class,” said Douglas Adams, president and CEO of RagingWire. “We expect that TX1 will become a critical data center hub for large enterprises and cloud companies as part of their global IT deployments.”

The grand opening event featured a digital laser ribbon cutting and appearances by sports legend and business icon Roger Staubach, Emmy Award-winning news anchor Shelly Slater as the master of ceremonies, RagingWire president and CEO Douglas Adams, NTT Communications president and CEO Tetsuya Shoji, RagingWire founder and executive chairman George Macricostas, and NTT Group executives from around the world.

According to the companies, the TX1 Data Center is engineered to meet the requirements of global enterprises, cloud providers and the unique conditions in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex, one of the top data center markets in the United States. Key features of the new facility incude: 16 megawatts (MW) of power to support large-scale, high-density computing; flexible private-suite configurations from 1 to 5 MW as well as multi-rack cages; direct connection to major cloud providers, including Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform; fiber connectivity to carrier hotels and more than 120 area data centers and connected properties; multiple onsite telecommunications providers; extensive, multi-factor physical security, including perimeter fencing, video surveillance, access controls, and 7x24 onsite security officers; a highly efficient, waterless cooling system that leverages available outside cool air and does not stress local water supplies; office space, conference rooms, and complimentary amenities including WiFi, a fitness room, and beverages.

NTT Com acquired an 80-percent equity stake in RagingWire in January 2014. In February 2017, NTT Com announced its intent to purchase the remaining shares of RagingWire.

Panduit boosts preconfigured IDF line

Panduit has expanded its Preconfigured Industrial Distribution Frame (IDF) product line to deliver more design flexibility for deploying and protecting rack-mount Ethernet switches. A new smaller enclosure size and 316 stainless steel versions provide options for customers deploying one to five switches with different corrosion protection requirements.

Tim Houghton, product line manager at Panduit, comments, “The new 12U IDF is ideal for customers deploying up to two switches, while the original 26U IDF accommodates up to five switches and often provides room for future expansion. Every Panduit preconfigured IDF provides protection from harsh industrial conditions, but the new stainless steel enclosures offer superior corrosion resistance in wash-down situations.”

According to the company, the new IDF’s design “provides consistent equipment deployment with up to 25-percent faster installation than an IDF installation that is not preconfigured, and 3x the cooling capacity over typical deployments, reducing downtime risk due to switch overheating.”

“As manufacturing demands a rapidly increasing number of Ethernet connections as a result of technologies, such as IIoT, IT/OT convergence, cloud computing, big data and analytics, the industrial market will require a growing number of corresponding offerings for Ethernet switch housing solutions that are scalable and can withstand the rigors of industrial environments,” comments Craig Resnick, vice president, ARC Advisory Group. “Panduit’s new 12U IDF clearly addresses these market trends, while still adhering to the certification and protection requirements of most industrial environments in an off-the-shelf package designed to help avoid manufacturing’s biggest nemesis, unscheduled downtime.”

The preconfigured IDF line is UL 508A listed, UL Type 4/12 or 4/4X/12 listed and IP66 rated to ensure safety and reliability.

CommScope becomes founding partner of Infrastructure Masons

CommScope recently announced that the company is the first founding partner of Infrastructure Masons, which is described as “an organization created to bring together technical professionals involved in infrastructure services, from end users to consultants to vendors.”

“I am proud to represent CommScope as a founding partner with Infrastructure Masons,” said John Schmidt, vice president of global data center solutions at CommScope. “CommScope designs and builds the connectivity for the most advanced networks in existence today, which positions us well to give back to this industry.”

Schmidt will serve on the Partner Advisory Council of the Infrastructure Masons, a group of senior industry executives who will help steer the “iMasons” organization on its journey to become the leading professional society in the digital infrastructure industry.

According to a press release, “Infrastructure Masons was established to provide network infrastructure executives and technical professionals an independent forum [wherein] to connect, grow and give back. Founded by Dean Nelson, a long-time infrastructure executive and industry contributor, the organization will focus its combined experience and expertise to advance the industry, develop fellow masons, and empower business and personal use of the infrastructure to better the economy, the environment, and society.”

“Our members average more than 20 years of industry experience, and are responsible for more than $100 billion of infrastructure projects,” contends Mark Monroe, Infrastructure Masons’ executive director. “We are proud to welcome CommScope as the first founding partner and look forward to the company’s continued contribution to the industry.”

Scissors grip and cut aramid yarn in fiber cable

Xuron’s Model 9180 Kevlar Shears have a serrated cutting edge that the company says grip and hold the aramid yarn—which can be slippery—and a sharp edge for cutting the yarn within fiber cable. “Incorporating tapered tips for penetrating cable jacketing, cushioned soft rubber handle grips and a return spring, these ergonomically designed scissors eliminate conventional finger loops,” Xuron said.

The company added that the shears are comfortable to hold in either hand and are “ideally suited for assembly, production, and field-service applications.” The cutting edges are heat-treated to a hardness of RC 58-60.

The shears list for $24.50.

Comtrol touts Microsoft Azure IoT Gateway SDK integration for its IO-Link Master industrial connectivity products

Comtrol Corporation, a manufacturer of industrial device connectivity products, announced at Hannover Messe in April that it has implemented Microsoft Azure’s IoT Gateway SDK on all of Comtrol’s IO-Link Master products.

Comtrol’s MultiLink technology allows IO-Link sensor data (status, events, and process data) to integrate directly with the Azure IoT Hub while simultaneously communicating with the sensor data to the PLC controller. Comtrol’s IO-Link Masters, with IoT Gateway functionality, communicate with sensors and send information to the Azure IoT Hub, which in turn can make it available to Azure Stream Analytics and other cloud-based applications.

“We are excited to support customers’ need to share IO-Link sensor information with enterprise cloud systems. Comtrol created a direct link between Comtrol’s IO-Link Master and Microsoft Azure. This will support popular SCADA systems, such as Wonderware, G.E. Predix and others running on the Azure cloud platform. IO-Link and Azure complete the goals of Industry 4.0 and IIoT,” said Bradford Beale, president of Comtrol Corporation.

Jack Vonich promoted to president of data center design, install specialist Instor

Instor Solutions, Inc. announced the promotion of Jack Vonich to president of the data center design, installation and consulting company, which is headquartered in Fremont, CA.

Vonich, a veteran of the data center industry, has served as Instor’s vice president of sales and marketing for the past four years. According to a press release, he will replace the company’s outgoing president Bob Hancock, “who is retiring, but will remain a valuable part of Instor, serving as chairman.” Prior to joining Instor, Vonich worked at Server Technology, where he led the sales effort of the power distribution unit manufacturer.

“In his time at Instor, Vonich has been the driving force behind an international sales team that has seen the company expand to locations in Virginia, Texas, Ireland, Amsterdam and the United Kingdom,” continued the release. The company says that as president Vonich “will focus on enhancing customer relations while expanding Instor’s deep partnership with vendors, many of which go back to the company’s founding in the 1980s.”

“This new role allows me to focus more on our strategic relationships and on the long-term strategy to bring more services to our customers,” Vonich said.

Legrand acquires containment-system provider AFCO Systems

Legrand North and Central America (LNCA) announced in May it purchased AFCO Systems, which designs, engineers, and manufactures racks, cabinets, enclosures and air-containment systems. “The acquisition will expand Legrand’s leadership in the commercial data center market—and enhance product offerings for key customer segments such as hyperscale, colocation, and cloud computing providers and system integrators,” Legrand said when announcing the acquisition.

The AFCO Systems product line will become part of LNCA’s newly formed cabinet and containment solutions business, within its data communications division. “The business will offer multiple product lines and allow for sales teams to offer a broader array of cabinet and containment solutions,” Legrand added.

John Selldorff, LNCA’s president and chief executive officer, commented, “The acquisition of AFCO Systems demonstrates Legrand North and Central America’s commitment to innovation and leadership in the data center market. The creation of our new cabinet and containment solutions business, featuring the combined product lines of LNCA and AFCO Systems, will enable us to further marshal our energy and resources around this exciting space and enable us to address almost any application or user requirement—from standard to full custom solutions.”

Legrand further explained that AFCO Systems’ tubular welded construction platforms will allow LNCA to better address the growing system-integrator market for preinstallation of servers and switches in cabinets, while also providing seismic-compliant solutions. In addition, the company said, AFCO Systems’ portfolio of aisle-containment solutions and custom engineering expertise complements Legrand’s recently introduced Contain-IT Flex system, and “positions Legrand as a provider of the most comprehensive and adaptable aisle-containment offering on the market.”

Mike Mallia, general manager of the cabinet and containment solutions business unit of LNCA’s data communications division—and AFCO System’s president and CEO prior to the acquisition—added, “We are excited to become a part of LNCA and to provide customers with an enhanced product portfolio. Legrand’s strong market presence, extensive distribution channels, and global manufacturing footprint will enable us to provide greater service and response times anywhere in the world and accelerate innovation and product development in a rapidly evolving marketplace.”

Rittal, Edge Mission Critical Systems team up on extreme-environment modular data center solutions

Rittal Corporation recently teamed up with Edge Mission Critical Systems (Edge MCS) to support Edge’s Binary Bunker brand modular data center systems that are designed to support edge network applications. Binary Bunkers contain Rittal enclosure, racking and cooling products.

When announcing the deal, Rittal said, “As the Internet of Things expands, massive amounts of data and content require faster processing and better security. Products like the Binary Bunker become more appealing than large capital expenditures on conventional data center platforms. For savvy companies, edge computing allows them to get closer to the data, improving speed, performance, productivity and security at a fraction of the cost of a conventional data center.”

The prefabricated modular data centers employ lightweight concrete for strength, long life, and environmental stability, Rittal continued. The Binary Bunkers are triple-seal protected—bullet-, vandal-, and fire-resistant. “Edge’s network deployments go beyond traditional enterprise level modular data center deployments,” Rittal added. “They serve areas that need high-security requirements such as government, military and utility operations.”

Robert Peck, vice president of Edge MCS, commented, “Edge MCS doesn’t want to have to explain to our customers who our suppliers are, how long they have been in business and why we chose them. We want our supplier choice, like Rittal, to be self-evident, favorably known and provide comfort that the brand and supplier are here for the long haul.”

Rittal’s LCP in-row chillers are used in Binary Bunker data centers. The company’s climate-control systems provide resiliency and redundancy protection, Rittal added. Specifically, the company said, “Resiliency is documented by Rittal, providing the data to support their mean time over failure for the row chillers and various components.” Furthermore, the company said, its closed-loop and in-row cooling systems use chilled water or direct-expansion enclosures, and water-distribution enclosures. “This allows Edge MCS to provide precise thermal management options in the extreme conditions of their installations, from the South Pole to the Arabian desert,” Rittal proclaimed, adding that its “superior hot and cold aisle containment solutions and energy-efficient in-row cooling systems are designed with our intelligent cabinet platform to provide state-of-the-art solutions to maximize clients' cooling infrastructure and lower power usage efficiency.”

NBase-T-compliant Ethernet ICMs

Pulse Electronics has released a new series of multi-gigabit NBase-T-compliant RJ45 connector modules for 2.5GBase-T and 5GBase-T applications. The company says the new integrated connector modules (ICMs) meet IEEE 802.3bz specifications and are compatible with 100/1000Base-T specifications.

Muhammad Khan, senior product manager of Pulse Electronics’ network business unit, stated, “Pulse ICMs are compatible for current and voltage mode PHYs and are qualified at major PHY vendors including Aquantia, Broadcom, and Marvell. Pulse parts have multiple LED options, have options to support Power over Ethernet, and are compliant with IEEE802.3af and IEEE802.3at standards.”

Pulse says its ICM designs contain transformers, chokes, and other electronic components to eliminate common mode noise, provide a high level of signal integrity, and reduce the risk of PHY damage due to high voltage surge. The ICM’s shielding incorporates EMI spring fingers, which act as a path of least resistance to electromagnetic and radio frequency interference (EMI/RFI) and help lower EMI emissions.

China, Singapore, D.C. Metro to drive colocation data center market to near-10-percent growth

In the latest edition of the IHS Markit Multi-Tenant Data Center Market Tracker, the research organization says the colocation data center market will grow by nearly 10 percent in 2017. Reporting some general findings of this most-recent tracker, Elizabeth Cruz—IHS Markit’s associate director for data centers, cloud and IT infrastructure—pointed out, “Wholesale and retail colocation data center revenues crossed over the $20-billion mark in 2016 and the current year is already showing promise.

“Highest rates of growth will come from regions of Asia, as has been the case for a few years,” Cruz continued. “China’s colocation market is projected to grow nearly 14 percent over the next five years dominated largely by the big state-owned telecommunication providers China Telecom and China Unicom. Singapore also has double-digit growth projections for the forecast period, as it continues to be a major access point into the rapidly developing Southeast Asian markets of India, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines.”

Cruz described Ashburn, VA as a “big market that just keeps getting bigger,” pointing out that the municipality known as Data Center Alley “already has well over half of the world’s internet traffic traveling through it.” IHS Markit projects Ashburn’s five-year compound annual growth rate will be 13 percent. “Ashburn has a rich fiber network, data center-friendly tax breaks, and relatively low property costs, while also being able to provide low-latency connection to the major public and private enterprises in the Washington D.C. area,” the analyst added.

The firm said it “fully expects the focus of colocation providers on direct connectivity with major cloud providers to further drive adoption of colocation over the next five years—helping to underpin a projected 8-percent five-year compound annual growth rate for total market revenues.”

Arecont Vision unveils compact MicroBullet indoor/outdoor, day/night megapixel camera

At the ISC West International Security Conference and Exposition held in April, Arecont Vision introduced its new series of MicroBullet IP-based megapixel cameras.

The MicroBullet is billed as “an extremely compact and affordable bullet-style camera, yet loaded with advanced features.” According to the company, “the tiny MicroBullet with its integrated adjustable 3-axis mount is a mere 6.8” (172.8mm) long and 2.8” (71.5mm) high. Available in 1080p or 3MP resolution, MicroBullet is ideal for low-profile indoor and outdoor surveillance use, featuring a die-cast aluminum, IK-10 impact resistant, and IP66 weather rated housing. All models offer rapid setup with a remote focus/zoom 2.8 – 8mm motorized lens.”

The proprietary SNAPstream (Smart Noise Adaptation and Processing) technology reduces camera bandwidth consumption in all MicroBullet models without impacting image quality. Arecont says the MicroBullet is ideal for applications with normal to challenging lighting conditions, regardless of time of day. The camera offers full day/night functionality, with a mechanical IR cut filter and integrated IR LED illuminators, and wide dynamic range (WDR) up to 100 dB at full resolution on select models for use in applications with challenging or varied lighting conditions.

The MicroBullet series is ONVIF (Open Network Video Interface Forum) Series S compliant. Each MicroBullet camera offers remote focus capability to simplify setup and significantly reduce installation time. Installers can install the camera on a wall, ceiling, or structure, then adjust the integrated 3-axis mount to point the sensor at the area to be covered. Once off the lift or ladder, the installer can select “short range focus” or “full range focus” for rapid setup from their computer, or they can adjust the focus and zoom as required by the scene.

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