Green Mountain, the greenest data center in the world
By   |  June 15, 2015

Housed in a former NATO ammunition depot in the heart of the mountain of a Norwegian fjord, the Green Mountain data center has all the advantages of a highly secure and environmentally friendly place.

Green Mountain is a Tier III + data center, located in highly secure Rennesøy, near Stavanger, the “oil capital”, on the southwest coast of Norway. A mirror site for replication and data security, was also built in Rjukan in Telemark, an historic industrial site located just over 150 km west of Oslo.

The Rennesøy Green Mountain Data Center
What was originally a NATO ammunitions depot in the heart of a mountain provided a unique location for the data center, more than 20 000m2 of IT rooms, somewhat unusual. It consists of six rooms accessible by long tunnels ensuring a high level of security. The standard Tier III and Tier IV were respected for its design.

The energy supply comes from several hydroelectric facilities upstream of the data center. It is powered by 3 separate medium voltage networks. The entire power supply, medium voltage cells via the low voltage distribution to high-performance modular Symmetra MW UPS was provided by Schneider Electric. The latter was also involved with the Green Mountain AS Datacenter cooling to minimize the energy impact by using natural resources. Seawater is drawn from 100 meters deep and with a system of siphon it is brought to the fjord basins for feeding the heat exchangers (sea water / water datacenter) using effect of gravity, which reduces the consumption of pump systems. The water drawn from 100 meters deep at a constant temperature is at 8 °C throughout the year.
This solution is a fully redundant cooling production (2 separate drilling systems, 2 pools) for distribution (double cold water loop, redundant air conditioning, separate networks) in an 2N type scheme.

The cold distribution is ensured by a precision cooling InRow cooling system to remove heat closer to IT sources, supplemented by Schneider Electric EcoAisle solution which ensures the thermal hot aisle containment, and increasing the performance of air conditioners. The environmental impact of cooling used in the data center is almost zero, in terms of cold production consumes very few resources and in terms of distribution. The data center is managed through Schneider Electric’s StruxureWare for Data Center software suite monitoring tool that provides carriers and operators with the information they need to ensure the perfect balance between high availability and efficiency, and throughout data center life cycle.

The Rjukan Green Mountain mirror site
Schneider Electric also designed the Rjukan data center. This mirror site whose construction began in December 2013 is already in service. The ability to deliver within a few months an operational data center was instrumental in Green Mountain, as this required commitment has enabled it to win a major contract with one of its major customers.

This data center has been designed, built and delivered in less than five months: a technical feat made possible by the use of Powertrain prefabricated modular solutions and modular panels made by AST Modular, a Spanish company recently acquired by Schneider Electric. The speed of local authorities who validated the construction permits within 24 hours was also decisive for this important contract.
The Rjukan datacenter consists of prefabricated modules featuring medium voltage supply of cells with integrated SM6 power module including transformer, modular inverter and control cabinet and also batteries with a life of 30 minutes. The main building hosting the IT rooms was built with AST Modular “box in the box” modular room panels.

The cooling is entrusted to two BECF Free cooling chillers with 600 kilowatts of magnetic bearing “Turbocor” compressors and an array of onboard cooling exchangers. This solution is specially adapted to extreme temperatures (- 40 ° C) with coefficients of performance (COP) of over 30 in winter and above 15 on average over the year, traditional chillers typically offer between COP 3 and 5.

This installation is entirely powered by electricity generated by hydroelectric power stations located a few hundred meters below, whose proximity enhances reliability. The reliability of different sources of energy supply, the security inherent in their location and the respect of higher Uptime Tier III standards, make Green Mountain a perfect Datacenter for European companies concerned with protecting their data. The Rjukan data center is the first phase of an investment of several million of euros to build a large ‘zero emissions’ colocation center. Having delivered the project ahead of schedule was decisive.

98.5% hydropower energy
98.5% of electricity in Norway comes from hydropower, which makes it the largest producer in Europe, an ecology feature consistent with the fundamental values of the country.

“Our goal is to be a leading operator in the European market, recognized for the quality of its green data centers. Green Mountain AS displays a PUE (Power Usage Efficiency) of less than 1.2 in a type III configuration. In view of IT infrastructure solutions, cooling and management provided by Schneider Electric, our customers have the opportunity to reach this PUE, every hour, every day of the entire year, “says Knut Molaug.

“We have great ambitions for Green Mountain AS, which is why the choice of our partners was essential: we wanted the very best on the market in terms of energy solutions coupled with optimum use of the architecture and technology. Since we opened our first data center near Stavanger, we find that the security, the stability of electricity prices, and the ecology and scalability, help us meet strong demand. Thus we plan to invest £ 60 million (more than 75 million €) in the Rjukan data center over the next few years,” says Knut Molaug, CEO of Green Mountain AS.

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