Colocation data centres: driving the smart cities of today

Apr 02, 2019
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Colocation Data Centres: Driving The Smart Cities Of Today


By the year 2025, about 50% of Indians would be living in cities. The sheer population pressure on these urban conurbations will demand that they take a different shape from what we are currently familiar with. Smart cities, as they are called, will be driven by smart solutions and services, some of which are already in existence in one form or the other today.


You will find the modern smart cities packed with advanced features to organise and manage public services and infrastructure with the help of technologies like:


  • IoT
  • Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning (AI & ML)


In the smart, hi-tech cities of the present and future, IoT, AI & ML would not be a choice but a necessity to manage mega infrastructure. Here is how the establishment of smart cities will impact the world of data handling and processing:


Smart Cities Driving the Growth of Data


As said above, smart cities aim at creating a technology-driven living standard backed by AI and ML. Hi-tech devices work by collecting and processing data from the Internet of Things (IoT) and other sensors in different parts of the city’s physical infrastructure. The information gleaned from this data is then used to run and operate key operations that are otherwise delivered by humans. Similarly, there are self-driving cars which automatically gets to know when a parking space becomes free.


These cities won’t have traffic wardens to direct and divert traffic in events of road mishaps. It is because smart devices will deploy the feedback about the congested roads and transmit it to cars along that route, directing them towards alternate routes. Lighting and heating/cooling will be automatically turned on and off when not in use, thus making these cities energy efficient.


In today’s smart cities, we already have examples of how these data centres are powering cities into a brave new future. In Santander, sensors feed data to the hi-tech devices about excessive air pollution in a smart city. In Bucharest, Hungary, smart cities have an efficient traffic system, while in Chicago, USA, there is an integrated economic system based on advanced technologies.


At the heart of these innovative approaches to city and public affairs management is data. However, all the data is meaningless without the availability of systems with the capacity to monitor and process them in real-time, generate insights, tackle inefficiencies, improve societal productivity, reduce global warming, and so much more. This is what places the data centres at the foundation of smart cities.


Rise of Open Data Platforms


Another important factor in the development and management of smart cities is the establishment of an open society of data. Intelligent buildings, power grids, transport systems, and all the features of a modern city can only be implemented if the data and information related to these cities can be processed by smart technology. However, the smart devices can only deliver as good insights as the data they are provided. The megacities of the future will have populations exceeding 10 million. If only a quarter of its population connect to the smart grid and allow their data to be processed, the onus will lie on the future data centres and the government to start accepting open data sharing as normative.


Data Centres - The Backbone of Smart Cities


Data centres hold prominence whenever anything related to interconnected communication and data comes into the picture. Cisco VNI report projects that by 2022, the connected devices would be more than three times the world population. We are already generating enough data for the currently available more than 330 DCs, which consume about 3% of the world’s electricity. By 2021, the number of DCs is expected to double.


The future of smart cities based on hi-tech technology will ultimately call for higher data computational power of DCs. The capacity of these data centres must also be greatly improved. Not only will colocation data centres have to get bigger to handle the increased demands, but they will also need greater amounts of energy. Indeed, the planning and development of cities of the future will not be complete without factoring in the location of these data centres, their proximity to the power grid, and backups in the event of a power outage.


STT GDC India Ready to Power Smart Indian Cities


STT GDC India operates 15 colocation data centres across the country, which includes all the prominent cities - Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, to name a few. Most of our colocation data centres are Rated 3, including some, like data centre in Bangalore offers floor loading exceeding TIA 942 & Tier 3 requirements.


Our facilities also offer superior scalability with 20MW of regular IT load scalable up to 45MW. They have modular design supporting 3kW to 27kW per rack.


Apart from scalability, security and uptime requirements, STT GDC India also focus and invest in developing greener DCs to put lower pressure on scarce natural and power resources, draw power from dedicated renewable resources and recycle water for DC operational needs. So far, up to 35% of STT GDC India’s power needs are fulfilled via renewable sources, keeping the power costs down.