AirTrunk targets cloud providers with hyperscale Sydney data centre

Two customers have already signed up for 30MW of capacity at new campus-style facility in Sydney’s west

AirTrunk has officially launched its flagship Sydney data centre, with the company saying the facility will be one of the largest in the Asia Pacific region on a megawatt basis.

The campus-style 64,000 square metre installation in Huntingwood in Sydney’s west is being rolled out in phases in response to customer commitments, according to AirTrunk CEO Robin Khuda.

The data centre is expected to eventually support an IT load in excess of 80 megawatts across more than 30 discrete data halls. “Each of those is built out as required for a customer,” AirTrunk chief technology officer Damien Spillane said. Each data hall will support 2.5 to 3MW of IT load.

Initial data halls with a total 20MW of power are currently being fitted out by the facility’s first customer. Khuda expects that the first workloads will go live in the data centre within a couple of months.

A second, 10MW phase is under construction in response to commitment from a second customer. The second phase will be online by mid-2018.

The data centre has 132kV transformers on site, with feeds from two different substations courtesy of a deal with Endeavour Energy. “We’ve got the most reliable utility infrastructure in a data centre in Australia,” Spillane said. “That level of voltage doesn’t fall over — it doesn’t fail,” the CTO added.

AirTrunk has built and secured more customer demand in 12 months than some of its peers have in the space of five years, Khuda said today at the data centre’s launch.

“We’re building high reliability data centres cheaper, faster and more energy efficient than any of our peers,” the CEO said.

The Sydney facility meets the federal government’s stringent security requirements, Khuda said.

The company expects to only directly serve a relatively small number of customers from the data centre. “We really focus on the big, hyperscale cloud providers, so they usually deploy multiple megawatt capacity,” Khuda said.

Cloud providers care about four things, the CEO said: High reliability, cost efficiency, quick deployment, and scalability. Those factors guided the design of the AirTrunk’s data centres, Khudasaid.

Because of its potential to scale in response to customer demand, big cloud providers can use the AirTrunk Sydney data centre as a “long-term home”, Khuda said. The hyperscale cloud providers tend to sign long-term leases ranging from seven to 15 years, the CEO said.

Although cloud service providers are the key target, AirTrunk has seen “a fair bit of interest” from large Australian enterprises, Khuda said.

“We’re talking to some of those big enterprises,” the CEO said. “A lot of those big enterprises, they want to go the public cloud but they’re not there yet — they want to put some of their infrastructure in the cloud [so] they probably want to co-locate pretty closely with one of those public cloud providers.”

AirTrunk’s 50MW Melbourne data centre will come online “within a matter of weeks,” Khuda said.

AiTrunk has regional ambition, eyeing expansion into “tier one” markets within APAC such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea, the CEO said. Cloud providers are growing at a “massive rate” in the region, he said.

“We have a team of people based out of Singapore; we are growing that team. We basically [are] actively looking across Asia Pac.”

“Some of the places we are well advanced; some of the places we are getting to a point we are appointing the builder as well,” he added.

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Tags AirTrunkinfrastructuredata centresData CentreData Center

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