Telx operates 20 data centers in 13 strategic U.S. markets and serves more than 1,200 customers. Earlier this year, it implemented Decathlon for Data Centers on the 10th floor of its facility at 32 Avenue of the Americas to optimize energy consumption and cooling in the new data center. Decathlon is monitoring all the control room air conditioning, uninterruptible power supplies, automatic transfer switches, generators, fuel systems, water leak protection, breaker positions and fire alarm systems in the main portion of the data center. It interacts with chiller systems and performs such automated tasks as turning on circulation pumps as needed and opening or closing dampers.
Now Telx is utilizing ABB to further support its data center operations performance by expanding Decathlon for Data Centers to a second phase of the company’s operations on the 24th floor of the same building.
The expansion applies Decathlon’s building management and power management capabilities to monitoring the critical cooling needs of the telecommunications equipment housed on this floor. Telx will be able to monitor equipment throughout the data center with a unified alarm system, response and control for the separate floors all through one screen.
“It’s important for Telx to have complete visibility in one location into all its operations at the Manhattan data center,” said Richard Ungar, ABB North America business manager for data center automation. “Through ABB Decathlon for Data Centers, Telx is capitalizing on the ability to connect with, monitor and automate equipment provided by all types of third-party suppliers so that operators can manage all of their cooling equipment from a single location within the data center. No other system provider can do this.”
With these capabilities, Decathlon is helping Telx find more strategic ways to manage energy consumption across its growing portfolio. For example, Decathlon calculates the energy in the cooling liquid for the center and reports a monthly history of energy usage so Telx managers can compare energy reports to utility charges, a crucial analysis in a region where electricity is very expensive.
“Not only does Decathlon allow us to manage power, cooling and space, but its open platform is key for Telx’s business analytics. ABB’s data center automation platform can easily bring infrastructure and operations’ data into our DCIM/DCSO architecture,” said Rafael Valdes, Telx manager of energy management. “We can look at all our customers across 20 sites nationwide and compare customer revenue and the amount of power each customer uses from a centralized location. In this way we can understand our profitability through a consolidated system.”
Telx is utilizing Decathlon to support its data center service optimization (DCSO) capability to optimize operations, energy management and business planning and to determine the true costs of delivering data center services.
Valdes said Decathlon enables data center infrastructure management (DCIM) data to be easily connected to all the company’s business tools, including customer service, financials, and enterprise resource planning, so that data can be extracted and exchanged for analyzing business profitability from a power and energy standpoint.
“Decathlon is more than DCIM; it’s also a business analytics tool,” Valdes said. “It’s providing me more options to do what I need to do.”
Decathlon can produce a wide range of reports on usage and equipment trends in the data center that enable comparisons over various time periods. The ABB technology also allows users to create their own displays of key performance indicators to help them better understand how their systems are operating.
On the 24th floor, Decathlon will monitor cooling units, leak detection systems and the environmental system, bringing in data from these operations to support decision making. One of the most important business demands for Telx and its industry today is to gain maximum visibility into its own operations and identify issues before they become problems. Decathlon is designed to alert operators to concerning trends and developments in the data center and its support areas so that uptime is maximized.
“Decathlon has the capability to both monitor and automatically control infrastructure equipment in data centers,” Ungar noted. “Decathlon allows data center operators to introduce complex control and optimization strategies. For example, information from a weather station connected with a data center possibly could be used to help optimize cooling units and analyze forecasting information to pre-cool chillers in anticipation of warmer temperatures.”
Telx chose Decathlon when it initially built its third Manhattan data center, NYC3, as a way of bringing together information from disparate systems all onto one screen for the first time.