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Tier Classification of Data Centres

Eric Maddison
Senior Consultant, The Uptime Institute
Uptime Institute

Unbiased and vendor neutral


Global thought leadership for the data center industry
Founded 1993
Standards and Training
> Created the global data center Tier Classifications System
> Certification of Designs, Facilities, Operations
> Training of data center engineers and operators
> Data Center Due Diligence Assessment
> Management & Operations Stamp of Approval
> Facilities Management Program Development
Uptime Institute Network
> North America, EMEA, APAC and LATAM
Symposium
Annual industry event

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Uptime Institute EMEA Team

Established 2012
Based in London and Dubai
Commercial and service delivery capabilities
Part of global Uptime Institute organisation
> Global standards
> Local execution

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Uptime Institute Tier Standards

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Why does Tier Certification matter ?

Quality and reliability of the data center


> Independent third party review by Uptime Institute
> Globally understood standard (Tier I, II, III and IV)
> Protects against loss of weakness in infrastructure
> Ensures consistent solution
EnterpriseRecognizes organizational accomplishment
> Demonstrate to senior management that performance capability is
there
Positioning and differentiation
> An Uptime Institute certified data center has an expected level of
resilience corresponding to business requirements
> Service Level Agreements can be quantified

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Tier Certifications Worldwide

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Uptime Institute Tier Standard
Owners Advisory Committee Members
Owner Advisory Committee (OAC) is a consortium of
data center owners/operators having received Uptime
Institute Tier Certifications
> OAC is a formally organized group created to validate and
endorse the contents and direction of the Tier Standards
OAC represents global leaders in the Financial,
Healthcare, Insurance, Manufacturing, Retail, and
Government industries
OAC members are worldwide: Australia, Brazil, Canada,
Costa Rica, India, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,
Luxembourg, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland,
Taiwan, UAE, UK, and the U.S.

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Tier Classification Genesis

An Owners Request
Data Center Performance and Investment Criteria
An Industry Solution
Tier Classifications Define Site Infrastructure Performance
An International Standard
Data Center Site Infrastructure Tier Standard
Annually Adjudicated Standard
Owners Advisory Committee (OAC)

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Evolution of Tier Documentation

2008 and previous


> White paper: Industry Standard Tier Classifications Define
Site Infrastructure Performance
Included attributes at request of operations teams
Provided illustrations at request of engineering community

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Illustrations Removed

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Attributes Table Eliminated
TIER I TIER II TIER III TIER IV
Building Type Tenant Tenant Standalone Standalone
Staffing None 1 Shift 1+ Shifts 24 by
Forever
Usable for critical load 100%N 100%N 90%N 90%N
Initial build-out UPS output 20-30 40-50 40-60 50-80
watts/ft (typical)
Ultimate UPS output watts/ft 20-30 40-50 100-150 150+
(typical)
Class A uninterruptible cooling No No Maybe Yes
Support space to raised floor 20% 30% 80-90+% 100+%
ratio
Raised floor height (typical) 12 18 30-36 30-36
Floor loading lbs/ft (typical) 85 100 150 150+
Utility voltage (typical) 208,480 208,480 12-15 kV 12-15 kV
Single points-of-failure Many + Many + Some + Fire+ EPO +
human error human error human error human error
Annual site caused IT 28.8 hours 22.0 hours 1.6 hours 0.8 hours
downtime (actual field data)
Representative site availability 99.67% 99.75% 99.98% 99.99%
Months to implement 3 3 to 6 15 to 20 15 to 20
Year first deployed 1965 1970 1985 1995

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Tier Standards

Tier Standard: Topology


> Defines Tier Classification System
> Performance Requirements for each functionality
objective

Tier Standard: Operational Sustainability


> Defines Expected Operational Behaviors
> Aligned by Tier

Both Are Owner Standards

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Tier Standards The Current Versions

http://www.uptimeinstitute.com/publications#Tier-Classification

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Tier Standard Topology

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Definitions

N
= Required number of units (components) necessary to
meet need
= Capacity of system when discussing the design load or
demand (Excludes IT-level architecture redundancy)
R
= Number of redundant components
Outage
= A loss of IT equipment
Loss of utility power, water, gas, or a hot day are
expected events

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Tier Classification Objectives

Provide a common understanding and language of


data center infrastructure concepts
Identify expected data center performance by
differences in topology
> Recognize that all data centers are not alike
nor need to be
> Refers to a single operations site
Tier concepts are simple; application requires
extreme diligence

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Tier Topology Concepts

Tier Classifications represent broad topology


concepts
> Redundant capacity components
> Redundant (diverse) distribution paths
> Classification based on Maintenance opportunity and
Failure response
Fractional concepts are not recognized
> No Standard for Tier III.6
> Tier III + is undefined
> Tier rating tied to lowest system

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Tiers Pertain to Design Topology

Configuration of the site infrastructure equipment


> Maintenance opportunities
> Fault response
Driven by owners tolerance for an outage
> Planned or unplanned downtime
Do not address operation or location of the facility

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Key Tier Topology Principles

Begin and end at the IT Critical Environment


> Owner decides what is critical or not
Build upon the previous Tier
Provide facility operation and maintenance
opportunities
Considers only the built environment
> Temporary, roll-up, emergency, truck-mounted equipment
not factored

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Tier Classifications

Tier I Basic Capacity


Tier II Redundant Components
Tier III Concurrently Maintainable
> Applies to Each and Every component and path
Tier IV Fault Tolerant
> Considers a Single event, but Consequential impact

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Tier I Basic Capacity

Summary
> Non-redundant capacity components (N only)
Critical Environment power and cooling systems
> Single distribution path
Operations and Maintenance Considerations
> Site infrastructure and Critical Environments must be shut
down for annual maintenance and repair work
> Installation or construction of capacity may disrupt the
Critical Environment

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Tier I Operational Risks

Any capacity component or distribution path element


failure will disrupt the Critical Environment
All or portions of the Critical Environment are
susceptible to disruption due to planned and
unplanned activities
Operations (Human) errors have high likelihood of
site disruption
Deferred maintenance to avoid downtime increases
the risk and severity of disruptions in the Critical
Environment

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Tier II Redundant Components

Summary
> Redundant capacity components (N+R)
Engine generators, UPS modules, IT and UPS cooling
> Single distribution path
Operations and Maintenance Considerations
> Some capacity components can be maintained or repaired
with limited impact to the Critical Environment
> Site infrastructure and Critical Environments must be shut
down for annual maintenance and repair work
> Installation or replacement of capacity components may
disrupt the Critical Environment

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Tier II Operational Risks

A capacity component failure may disrupt the Critical


Environment
A distribution path element failure will disrupt the Critical
Environment
All or portions of the Critical Environment are susceptible
to disruption due to planned and unplanned activities
Operations (Human) errors have high likelihood of site
disruption
Deferred maintenance to avoid downtime increases the
risk and severity of disruptions in the Critical Environment

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Tier III Concurrently Maintainable

Summary
> Redundant capacity components and independent distribution
paths (transformers and transfer switches are path elements)
> Elements of a distribution path may be inactive
> Predicated on dual-cord IT equipment
> No runtime limits on engine-generator capacity at design load

Operations and Maintenance Considerations


> Each and Every capacity component and distribution path
element can be taken out of service for maintenance, repair, or
replacement without impacting the Critical Environment or IT
processes

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Tier III Practical Insight

Each and Every extends to:


> Valves and fittings
> Switchgear and panels
Maintenance focus requires:
> Dead lugs for safety during electrical activities
> Dry pipes to avoid liquid spills
Single Points-of-Failure are not eliminated

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Tier III Operational Risks

All or portions of the Critical Environment are


susceptible to disruption due to failures or unplanned
activities
Scheduled maintenance activities occur on redundant
components, distribution paths, and systemswhich
will reduce redundancy and may elevate risk of
disruption
Operations (Human) errors may lead to site disruption
Single-cord IT equipment or incorrect installation may
defeat Tier III infrastructure

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Tier IV Fault Tolerant

Summary
> Redundant capacity components
> Redundant active distribution paths
> Compartmentalization of both capacity components and
distribution paths
> N after any failure
> Continuous Cooling for critical IT and UPS systems
> No runtime limits on engine-generator capacity at design load
Operations and Maintenance Considerations
> Each and Every capacity component and distribution path
element can sustain a failure, error, planned, or unplanned event
without impacting the Critical Environment or IT processes

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Tier IV Practical Insight

Single event with consequential impact


> Loss of a switchboard impacts everything downstream
powered by that switchboard
> Replacing a valve requires a dry pipe on both sides
Continuous Cooling must be consistent with UPS for
IT equipment power
Most human errors are considered failure events
> Exceptions:
Emergency Power Off (EPO) Activations
Fire Suppression Activations
Failure to properly connect IT loads

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Tier IV Operational Risks

The Critical Environment is not susceptible to disruption


due to failure of any single capacity component,
distribution element, site infrastructure system, or single
human error
Scheduled maintenance activities occur on redundant
components, elements, and systemswhich may create
a risk of disruption
Operation of the EPO system, activation of the fire
protection system, or malicious human interaction may
lead to site disruption
Single-cord IT equipment or incorrect installation may
defeat Tier IV infrastructure

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Tier IV Autonomous Response

Operator intervention shall not be required to


respond to single system failure
Control system failure shall not disrupt Critical
Environment
> Critical Environment must remain stable with failed control
system
Tier IV data center facility infrastructure control
systems
> Detect system failure
> Isolate and contain failure
> Sustain N capacity after failure of any component or path
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Tier Standard Topology Application to Mechanical
and Electrical Systems

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N

Either kW or number of capacity components


> Capacity of system to meet the load
> Required number of units to meet the load

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Nominal Capacity: 300 kW Example

Components: N = 1
Capacity: N = 300 kW

Components: N = 2
Capacity: N = 300 kW

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N+1 Components

N= 300 kW
600kW Installed

N + 1= Component Count

450 kW Installed

Stranded capacity is underutilized investment but


running all pumps at reduced speed saves energy
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2N Capacity

N= 300 kW

600 kW Installed

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N and Tiers

No direct relationship between N and Tiers


N+R or 2N does not guarantee functionality
If N is one piece of equipment, N+1 = 2N = S+S
> What Tier?
2N does not speak to Concurrent Maintainability or
Fault Tolerant criteria
N is often applied to capacity components, but not
distributions paths
> Common shortfall

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Component Count Does Not Determine Tier
Level
The Uptime Institute:
> N+1, N+2, N+N or 2(N+1) does not determine Tier level
> It is possible to achieve Tier IV with just N+1 components
for some systems

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Tier I Chilled Water Distribution

Components: N = 2
Basic Capacity

Chilled Water Supply

Chilled Water Return

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Tier II Chilled Water Distribution

Components: N = 2
Redundant Components

Chilled Water Supply

Chilled Water Return

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Tier III Chilled Water Distribution

Components: N = 2
Concurrently Maintainable

Chilled Water Supply

Chilled Water Return

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Tier III Chilled Water Distribution

Components: N = 2
Concurrently Maintainable

Chilled Water Supply

Chilled Water Return

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Tier III Chilled Water Distribution

Components: N = 2
Concurrently Maintainable

Chilled Water Supply A and B

Chilled Water
Return A and B

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Tier IV Chilled Water Distribution

Components: N = 2
Concurrently Maintainable
Fault Tolerant
Chilled Water Supply A and B

Chilled Water
Return A and B

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Tier I Chilled Water System

Basic Capacity
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Tier II Chilled Water System

Redundant Components

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Tier III Chilled Water System

Concurrently Maintainable

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Tier IV Chilled Water System

Components
N=2

Fault Tolerant
Concurrently Maintainable
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2.4.1.d) Continuous Cooling

Continuous Cooling is the capability to maintain


steady state in the Critical Environments during a
UPS discharge when neither utility nor engine-
generator power is available
> Computer rooms, Network rooms, UPS rooms
Corollary to uninterrupted power for IT devices
Continuous Cooling is required to meet Tier IV
criteria
> Part of the Tier Standard: Topology

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Tier I Power Backbone

Basic Capacity

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Tier II Power Backbone

Redundant Components

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Tier III Power Backbone

Concurrently Maintainable

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Tier IV Power Backbone

Concurrently Maintainable
Fault Tolerant

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Tier III Engine-Generator Concept (2N)

Concurrently Maintainable
N=2

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Tier III Engine-Generator Concept (N+1)

Concurrently Maintainable
N=2

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Tier IV Engine-Generator Concept (N+1)

Concurrently Maintainable
N=2
Fault Tolerant

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Utility Power

For Tier III and IV, engine-generator systems are


considered the source of reliable power for the data
center
Utility power is an economic alternative
The utility power system does not have to be
Concurrently Maintainable
Multiple utility feeds for redundancy are NOT required for
any Tier
> Multiple utility feeds may be required for capacity

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Engine-Generator Ratings

International Standards Organization (ISO) 8528-1 is the


governing document
Rating classifications
> Emergency Standby
> Prime
> Continuous
Major differences in operating hours and power output
capacities

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Standby Rating

Definition
> The maximum power available during a variable electrical
power sequence, under the stated operating conditions, for
which a generating set is capable of delivering in the event
of a utility power outage or under test conditions for up to
200 hours of operation per year ISO 8528-1
But
> The permissible average power output over 24 hours of
operation cannot exceed 70% of the standby rating unless
otherwise agreed by the manufacturer ISO 8528-1

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Prime Rating

Definition
> The maximum power which a generating set is capable of
delivering continuously while supplying a variable electrical
load when operated for an unlimited number of hours per
year
But ISO 8528-1
> The permissible average power output over 24 hours of
operation cannot exceed 70% of the Prime rating unless
otherwise agreed by the manufacturer ISO 8528-1

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Continuous Rating

Definition
> The maximum power which the generating set is capable
of delivering continuously while supplying a constant
electrical load when operated for an unlimited number of
hours per year
ISO 8528-1

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Rating Examples
(Same Frame)

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Tier Standard Topology Additional Considerations

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2.4.1.c) Compartmentalization

Applies to complementary systems and distribution


paths in Tier IV topology
Tier IV requires physical isolation to prevent a single
event from simultaneously impacting more than the
number of redundant components or systems
Each compartment shall contain no more than the
number of redundant components
> Where there are N+R components, no more than R
components inside a single room

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Equipment Compartmentalization

Not Compliant with Tier IV Requirements

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Effective Compartmentalization

Secondary Chilled Water


Pumps N=3 (R=1)

Chilled Water Machines and


Primary Pumps N=4 (R=2)
Tier IV Compliant

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Electrical Compartmentalization

Not Compliant with Tier IV Requirements

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Electrical Compartmentalization

Tier IV Compliant

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Electrical Compartmentalization

Not Compliant with Tier IV Requirements

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Electrical Compartmentalization

Tier IV Compliant

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Distribution Path

Not Compliant with Tier IV Requirements

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Distribution Path

Tier IV Compliant

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Site Communications Path

POP A

POP B

Not Compliant with Tier IV requirements

Concurrently Maintainable
paths required for Tier III
Common vault is not Fault
Tolerant
Compartmentalized path
required for Tier IV

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2.6 Ambient Temperature Design Points

For all Tiers, equipment to be selected and sized per


ASHRAE HandbookFundamentals extreme
maximums
> Dry Bulb: N=20 value
> Wet Bulb: Extreme Maximum Value
Ambient temperatures impact the capacity of cooling
equipment and engine-generator radiators
Equipment must be sized to meet the extreme
maximum temperatures
Altitude over 3,000 feet may also impact capacity

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ASHRAE Design Conditions

Reference: 2009 ASHRAE Handbook


Fundamentals
(Updated and Published every 4 years)

DALLAS, TEXAS, USA


Monthly Design Dry Bulb Extreme Annual
Temperature Profiles (July) Design Conditions
2% 1% 0.4% N=20 years
35.7C 36.8C 38.0C 43.3C
96.3F 98.2F 100.4F 109.9 F
(Probable) Hours Exceeded

15 hours 7.5 hours 3 hours Unlikely


(20-year period)

Required for all Tiers

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Manufacturing Tolerances

This means that a nominal 100kW unit could actually deliver only 92kW

The performances are obtained through calculations and they are therefore subject to the
consequent variations. Declared performances according to EN14511:2011

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Fuel System Tier Progression

Tier I Fuel storage to support engine generator


Tier II Redundant tanks and pumps
Tier III Redundant fuel supply paths to N engine
generators
Tier IV Autonomous control response to
component or path failure

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Fuel System Tier Criteria

Tanks, piping, and pumps


> Minimum of 12 hours of on-site fuel storage for all Tiers
> Concurrently Maintainable for Tier III while engines
are in operation!
> Fault Tolerant for Tier IV
Tier III fuel system must provide fuel from N tanks to
N engines during scheduled maintenance on any fuel
system component
Tier IV fuel system controls must respond to system
failures autonomously
> Fuel system must provide fuel to N engines after any
failure
> Isolate and contain a leak or other failure

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Fire Detection and Suppression Systems

Application of Tiers focuses on the connection between


the fire detection/suppression system and the HVAC and
electronic systems supporting the critical environment
Does not include the physical suppression system
> e.g., sprinkler piping, sprinkler valves, etc.
Tier III requires that the Critical Environment must not be
impacted by any fire detection/suppression component
taken out of service for calibration, repair, or
replacement on a scheduled basis
Principal Tier IV consideration
> Tier IV requires autonomous response to failure

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Building Automation

Includes
> Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA)
> Plant Controls (BAS or BMS)
> Emergency Power Off (EPO)
Tier III requires that the Critical Environment must not be
impacted by any control element taken out of service for
calibration, repair, or replacement on a scheduled basis
Principal Tier IV consideration
> Tier IV requires autonomous response to failure

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Other Ancillary Systems

No Tier-level specific or Certification criteria


> Building Pressurization (Makeup Air Systems)
> Battery Room Ventilation
> Water Treatment Systems
> Free-cooling or Economizer Systems
> Lightning Protection
> Grounding
> Fuel Polishing
Integrate carefully!

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Component Labeling

All Tier levels require that each and every critical


component is uniquely labeled
> e.g., CH-1 (chiller #1), UPS-1A, etc.
> Includes breakers and valves
Required to develop commissioning plans,
preventive maintenance program, and operational
procedures

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Tier Standard Operational Sustainability

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Operational Sustainability

The behaviors and risks beyond Design Topology


that impact the ability of a data center to meet its
Business Objectives over the long term

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Indicators of
Operational Sustainability Shortfalls

Computer room or storage space?

Accident or poor planning?

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Indicators of
Operational Sustainability Shortfalls

Office space in the computer room

Mercedes in a data center support space

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Genesis of Operational Sustainability

Uptime Institute over the years has observed management


issues posing the largest risk to uptime then physical
infrastructure
> Inadequate staffing
> Ineffective or non-existing maintenance and training programs
> Lacking processes and procedures
> Resulting in the majority of outages being caused by human error
No standard existed to help owners/operators determine
> Common language/vocabularyofdatacenteroperations
> Focus of data center management
> Resource allocation
> Justification of additional resources

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Genesis of Operational Sustainability

Failures

Caused by human error


(and thus avoidable) 73%

Uptime Institute Abnormal Incident Reports through 1 January


2014

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Purpose of the Standard

Addresses behaviors and risks to:


> Reduce failures due to human error (cause of 70% of
failures)
> Achieve maximum potential from the facility infrastructure
Provides a tool to measure a data centers
Operational Sustainability using these behaviors
and risks
Retains focus on those items that will most improve
the performance of a data center
Encourages doing it your wayresults oriented
> Behaviors, not requirements
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An Owners Standard

Developed by Uptime Institute team with hands-on


site operations experience
Tier Standard: Operational Sustainability
(1 July 2010)
> Measures effectiveness of data center management
> Assists owners to maximize the investment in
infrastructure
> Gives owners an indication of where the data center
stands operationally in relation to others
> Supports efforts to maximize uptime and minimize risk
Adjudicated by the Owners Advisory Committee
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Elements of Operational Sustainability

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Operational Sustainability
Rating System

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Relationship Between Tiers
and Operational Sustainability
Based on Business Objectives
Increased rigor with increased uptime requirement
> Greater management rigor required to achieve the design
potential of Tier III and IV infrastructure
> Change opportunities become more complex and require more
planning to achieve
Both Tier Classification System and Operational
Sustainability required to meet business/uptime
objectives

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Tiers Summary

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Mapping Business Objective to Tiers

Can your organization afford to take the computer room


down to perform infrastructure maintenance (planned
downtime)?
> If yes, Tier I or II
> If no, Tier III or IV
Can your organization afford unplanned downtime taking
your computer room down?
> If yes, Tier III
> If no, Tier IV

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Tiers Certification Process

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Tier Certification Process

Tier Certification Tier Certification Tier Certification


Of DesignDocuments of ConstructedFacility of Operational Sustainability

Design Documents Data Center Meets Data Center Is Being


Meet the Tier Functionality for the Managed/Operated to
Objective Tier Objective Meet the Tier Objective

For more information:


http://uptimeinstitute.com/contact-us

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Tier Gap Analysis

Before starting the formal Tier Certification process


of existing data centers
> Single in-office review of select design documents to
identify common significant design shortfalls
> Memo documents major gaps to the Tier
objective
> Conference call with owner team to discuss findings

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Tier Certification of Design Documents

Review of 100% design document package in


Uptime Institute offices
Deliverable of Tier deficiencies and Operational
Sustainability enhancements
Conference call with owner and design
team to discuss report
Compliance review of revised
drawings
Award letter and foil

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Tier Certification of Constructed Facility

On-site visit by team of consultants


Identify discrepancies between design
drawings and installed equipment
Observe tests and demonstrations to
prove Tier compliance
Deliverable of Tier deficiencies and
Operational Sustainability enhancements
Conference call with owner team
Award letter, foil, and plaque

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Tier Certification of Operational Sustainability

Site visit to review the facilities management


Evaluate presence and effectiveness of staffing,
training, maintenance program, processes, and
procedures
Scorecard and Gold, Silver, Bronze rating
Certification becomes
suffix to Tier
> Tier III Gold

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Global Tier Certifications

Tier II 20 Tier II 4 Tier III Gold 4


Tier III 224 Tier III 76 Tier IV Gold 2
Tier IV 50 Tier IV 14

Certifications Underway Worldwide 185

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Unbiased and vendor neutral thought leadership,
research, and publications
Thank you!

Eric Maddison
emaddison@uptimeinstitute.com
http://uptimeinstitute.com
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