Mobile fallback data center for healthcare organization LENTIS

RUNNING FLAWLESSLY “The mobile data center is running flawlessly. You don’t really notice it’s there.” That’s how Automation Manager Eppe Wolfis of the healthcare organization Lentis responds when asked how he likes the “ENGIE Mobile Data Center – powered by Legrand” (EMDC), now that it has been running for more than a year. The EMDC is the fallback data center that was delivered to Lentis in Zuidlaren. The EMDC is housed in a humble shipping container and holds a fully-fledged data center that runs synchronously with the existing data center that is located within two hundred meters of the EMDC.

Wolfis went in search of a concept to make his idea a reality. The search brought him to a school in the city of Groningen where a completely new mobile data center had been set up on the roof of the temporary school in a shipping container after a fire. “That’s the solution,” Wolfis thought, and he tracked down the supplier of the mobile data center, which turned out to be ENGIE. According to Wolfis, it soon became clear that ENGIE had a great deal of knowledge and experience in the field of data centers, for example, with a complete Mobile Data Centers program – in cooperation with Legrand Data Center Solutions. ENGIE was therefore one of the two parties with which Lentis entered into discussions.

According to the Automation Manager, the decisive factors in choosing the EMDC included the conceptual solution and the favorable maintenance scenario for a period of five years, combined with the purchase price and the focus on “Green IT”. According to Wolfis, “Green IT” means, for example, the solution for cooling the EMDC. Rather than using air conditioners, the cooling capacity of the outside air is used. “Two hundred days a year, the outside temperature is lower than what you need in a data center. That results in considerable energy savings,” he explains. “In addition, the modular cooling solution ensures optimum availability and scalability. The cooling solution is scalable to such an extent that when IT demands extra capacity, the cooling capacity is automatically scaled up. That way, there is never any unnecessary use of cooling capacity. So, that is also a saving.”

“If you ask me if I would recommend the EMDC, my answer is undoubtedly YES,” Wolfis continues. “In case of an IT failure, you have only one chance to get it right. And we have every confidence in this mobile solution in the event of a disaster. For example, we have practiced moving the 8x3 meter container together several times. The container can be in place in Groningen in under four hours.” Everything is correct, down to the last detail, summarizes the Automation Manager. “And that inspires the necessary confidence. After all, when it comes to choosing an IT fallback solution, you don’t want to make a rash decision. The continuity of your organization stands or falls with it. In our case, fifty locations are linked to the EMDC and we still have quite a bit of capacity remaining. The container is now half full. In that way, the solution is scalable, and therefore we are ready for the future.”