Steve Fairfax, president of Mtechnology initiated a high-level series of presentations on day two of the 7x24 Exchange conference in Phoenix, AZ. Steve cited his years of experience in the nuclear industry, including analysis of the Three Mile Island and Fukushima disasters, in support of major themes regarding proper maintenance of reliability systems in data centers.

Steve has previously described much of the preventive maintenance practices of the industry as unnecessary, noting that they often introduce opportunities for human error putting facilities at risk. He also outlined for a full conference hall many of the risks associated with diesel fuel due to changes in formulation, ultralow sulphur regulations, and biodiesel regulations. He said that failure to run accounted for a plurality of system failures in data centers. Steve noted that 10 sec start times added stress to generator systems and cause them to take longer to synch compared to routines that allowed longer time to start.

In a 60-minute presentation, Steve also poked fun at several longstanding industry beliefs about reliability, and, in one case, specifically challenged the quality of a report by an unidentified major UPS manufacturer.

Later in the day, Robert Gibson of AKF, described its work building Deutsche Bank’s new ECO data center at an unidentified location in the New York metropolitan area. Gibson described the entire process, beginning with design, outlined strong energy efficiency and cooling practices, and presented a modular construction plan that allows room for the facility to grow.

Jay Park, director, Datacenter Design and Construction and Thomas Furlong, director, Site Operations, both of Facebook, continued the company’s recent practice of sharing design and operating strategies in its new facilities. With Park focusing on mechanical systems and Furlong emphasizing electrical systems, these two presenters described some of the strengths of its Oregon, North Carolina, and Europe.

Furlong also described the company’s Open Compute Project, noting that all the drawings related to these facilities could be found at the project’s website: Furlong said that the initiative was true to Facebook’s open software roots.

The Uptime Institute’s Pitt Turner presented his analysis of how global data center trends affect North American markets. Turner noted that the BRIC nations do not have much legacy equipment, but sometimes face stricter regulations relating to emissions or data security. He also discussed several technical differences in technology, construction, and siting.

The day also included a presentation on the EPA’s Energy Star program and breakout sessions on the PhoenixNap, fire protection, and cyberattacks.