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Schneider Electric supports Loughborough Uni data centre modernisation

Image: Adobe Stock / Connect world

Loughborough University has worked with Schneider Electric and its Elite Partner on365 to undertake a major modernisation of its Haslegrave and Holywell Park data centres.

Delivered in two phases, the project saw on365 update the Haslegrave facility, replacing an outdated raised floor and deploying an EcoStruxure Row Data Centre solution, which has improved the overall structure and enabled an efficient data centre design.

on365 also brought other parts of the infrastructure under the IT department’s control, making use of new InRow DX units to deliver improved cooling and provide resiliency against unplanned weather events, including heat waves which had previously impacted the facility’s IT and cooling operations.

Implementing Schneider’s EcoStruxure Row Data Centre solution has created new space for future IT expansions and extended a ‘no single points of failure’ design throughout the facility. This made the environment more suitable for a new generation of compact and powerful servers, and the solution was replicated at Holywell Park thereafter.

The legacy UPSs at the sites have also been replaced with Schneider Electric’s Galaxy VS UPS with lithium-ion batteries.

“At the foundational level of everything which is data-driven at the university, the Haslegrave and Holywell data centres are the power behind a host of advancements in sports science, and our transition towards a more sustainable operation,” said Mark Newall, IT specialist at the University of Loughborough. “Working with Schneider Electric and on365 has enabled our data centre to become more efficient, effective and resilient.”

Loughborough has now deployed the Schneider’s EcoStruxure IT platform, providing it with enhanced levels of visibility and data-driven insights to help identify and mitigate potential faults before they become critical.

This, alongside a new three-year Schneider Electric services agreement delivered via on365, has given the university 24×7 access to expert maintenance support. The university also utilises a large distributed, edge network environment, which has in-excess of 60 APCTM Smart-UPSTM single-phase UPSs protecting it. As part of its services agreement, all critical power systems are monitored and maintained via EcoStruxure IT, providing real-time visibility and helping IT personnel to manage the campus’ network more efficiently.

“Having a well-structured preventative maintenance programme is vital to ensure that the data centre and IT systems are optimised and operationally efficient,” commented Carl Richardson, Technology Support Manager, on365 Ltd. “At on365, we’ve continued to collaborate closely with the university, not only to provide them with significant value, but to ensure they can meet their strict procurement governance whilst having access to our extensive support and services capabilities.”

“As a passionate advocate for sports and academia, I’m proud to see this complex project delivered successfully with our partners at on365,” added Mark Yeeles, VP, Secure Power Division, Schneider Electric, UK and Ireland. “Loughborough has a prestigious reputation and prides itself on its students’ experience. Through its EcoStruxure Data Centre Solution, Schneider Electric will have played an important part in future-proofing its critical infrastructure, helping improve the reliability and sustainability of its IT operations.”

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