Texas computing giant took the silence off to a kind of data-center-in-a-box that’s specifically designed for military outfits looking to air-lift temporary computing power into emergency situations called Dell Tactical Mobile Data Center. According to John Fitzgerald — the chief technology officer of the Dell business unit that serves the federal government and a former U.S. Army officer this 100-foot-wide data center can not only withstand 3 gs, it’s designed to blend in with its surroundings.
“It’s meant to look like any other supply container,” he tells Wired, “so that it won’t be targeted as some sort of high-value asset.”
For instance EBay is using modular data centers on the roof of its computing facility designed to work anywhere. In fact it is not Dell’s first flying data center container. But, it’s the first the company has built to withstand 3 gs during air travel — a g being the force of gravity, or 9.80665 meters per second squared according to Fitzgerald. The idea, he says, is that you can quickly get the computer power close to “the war fighter.”
“You can crunch your data locally, in theater, whether you’re using Hadoop or something else,” he says, referring to the open source number-crunching platform, “but you can also take a feed from a higher headquarters.”
The container includes a built-in temperature, humidity, airflow controls, and fire suppression tools, also it can hold up to 10,000 pounds of hardware in three hardware racks. There are external ports for attaching power, network, and water. The water is used for cooling.
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