Challenges facing data center industry

3 Minutes Read


Global data centre deployment is accelerating with the rollout of 5G. By 2027, the demand for storage, computing and data processing in "traditional" data centers is expected to grow by around 21% per year, and for hyper data centers by 35% per year.


The growing central place of data centers in our society means that there is an increasing demand for quality and service continuity. 



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To successfully support these new trends, continuous monitoring is required to increase technical infrastructure performance. This means adopting a continuous improvement approach to data centre operations and security. Global solutions are available to improve the energy performance of your infrastructure, reduce your costs and even your carbon footprint.  

This is why scheduled audits to verify infrastructure efficiency, energy performance and logical and physical security of data centres have become more than necessary to guarantee business continuity and ensure performance and quality of services. 





Technical infrastructures audit:


Data centers are the modern day factories. Buildings that host complex and costly technical infrastructures. Performance, availability and cost reduction are the three indicators that drive technological innovation and competitiveness.  



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In order to achieve the following objectives, an audit of the state of the technical infrastructure (compliance, efficiency, failure) will be necessary for the data centres in operation, as well as the choice of a data centre for outsourcing and the deployment of a new data centre:


  • Verify that the state of the facilities meets the requirements in terms of predefined SLAs and quality of service
  • Search for ways to improve the efficiency and availability of technical infrastructures (UPGRADE)



Electrical installation control:


  • Checking the general state of electrical panels, HV/LV transformers, circuit breakers, generators, inverters, UPS, batteries, CDC, cables, PDUs, etc. 
  • Checking the absence of alarms (equipment, HMI, BMS, indicator lights, etc.) 
  • Verify the earthing of equipment  
  • Diagnosis of all circuits (phase controller, electronic trip unit, lightning conductor, capacitor banks, etc.) 
  • Carrying out an infrared thermography check of the boxes and electrical equipment. 

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  • Faire des relevés de consommation de tous les compteurs d’énergie et centrales de mesure (E, P, Q, Cos φ, Tension, THD(V), THD(I), THD-R(I), mesure de la terre, autonomies des batteries, autonomie Gasoil …) 
  • Calculer le PUE 
  • Analyser les relevés et détecter les points de défaillance (Cos φ>0.9, THD<5%, R<5ohms, équilibre des phases…) 



Control of cooling installation


  • General check of the state of the production units, air-conditioning units, air handling units, pumps, ventilation units, etc.  
  • Check for the absence of alarms (equipment, HMI, BMS, lights, etc.) 
  • Carry out an infrared thermography check of the cold aisles/heats and the atmosphere in the IT/Telecom and network production rooms  

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  • Measure the air velocity in the containment or at the level of the perforated false floor
  • Check the tightness of the enclosures 
  • Measure the temperature and humidity in front of the IT/Telecom racks (min 1m from the floor) 
  • Determine hot/cold spots (ASHRAE states that ideally the entry temperature of IT/Telecom equipment should be between 18 and 27°C) 
  • Determine the relative humidity (ASHRAE states that ideally the RH% should be between 20-80%) 
    • A relative humidity of >70% degrades the properties of the dielectric material that makes up the electronic board. Under certain conditions, the physical properties of the material are altered and it becomes partially conductive. The higher the temperature of the equipment, the stronger the effect, so this phenomenon is amplified in high power equipment.
    • The main risk of low humidity <30% is electrostatic discharge. The conductivity of the air decreases and electrical charges accumulate on the surface of the various components. When the electrical potential is too high, electrostatic discharge can occur and damage to the equipment can occur.
  • Check the starting and stopping sequences of the compressors (number of starts/h and running time)
  • Control the speed of the EMC fans in the air conditioning cabinets (variable speed drive in Hz- or on HMI in percentage)  
  • Analyse the readings and detect points of failure  


Fire safety system control:  


  • Check for the absence of alarms on the detection, emergency and extinguishing units 
  • Check that the fire safety system has a back-up power supply
  • Check the level of extinguishing gas
  • Checking the state of contamination of the IDs (if possible the level of contamination of the IDs)
  • Checking the state of the DFHS
  • Verification of the presence of indicator lights and local and general sirens
  • Checking the presence, compliance and condition of manual fire extinguishers
  • Ensure that evacuation plans are in place and up to date
  • Verify the position of the dampers and the resetting of the fire dampers



Access control, video surveillance and intrusion system control:


  • General check of the intrusion control unit, keypad, motion sensors, door contact, badge reader, camera, etc. 
  • Verify the absence of alarms (equipment, HMI, BMS, indicator lights, etc.)
  • Checking the backup power supply for the three installations
  • Check the correct operation of the access control system by sampling (badges, access matrix by profile and zone, adding and deleting badges, etc.)
  • Check the correct operation of the video surveillance system (recording autonomy, access to recordings, deletion of recordings, etc.)
  • Checking that alerts are sent to the NOC (Network operation centre) or PCS (Security control station) 

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Audit report indicators:


Case study:


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The audit report will provide updated indicators of the state of the technical infrastructure, SLA assessment and service quality. This helps to make the best strategic decisions in terms of operations, to implement a policy of continuous improvement and to prepare forecasted operating budgets consistent with the predefined objectives. 

The data centre market is growing fast, and competition is intensifying as a result. Audit reports will be a strong commercial argument to stand out and demonstrate the choice of implementing a continuous improvement policy in order to gain in competitiveness. 




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Picture of Anis MOKDED


Data Center expert