Today my team released an RFP for a small, but dense eBay data center design project in Phoenix Arizona. I am really excited about this RFP for two reasons. First, this is an ambitious project that will not only challenge the engineering and design firms but the hardware manufacturers as well.
9 months ago, I was in sunny Phoenix at the 7x24 conference. A group of about 40 DCP end users gathered on a Sunday morning for a 5 hour brainstorming session on next generation solutions. We discussed the Top 10 list, the stack, the current Chill Off 2 testing, modular data center design concepts and what the future could and should look like. At the end of the session we had our updated top 10 list and a direction decided for the Chill Off 3. The Chill Off 3 would be broken into two parts. The first part is a highly flexible, modular, high-temp data center design that would allow solutions from today and tomorrow to snap in like legos. The infrastructure would also scale as needed rather than building out everything from day one. The second, was the compute load itself and how we could maximize performance not only in the power and cooling systems, but in the actual work being performed. We would look at the entire system performance rather than the components by themselves. More on the compute load part in a future blog posting.
We presented our concepts the following day to the general audience at the 7x24 conference. That sparked 9 months of work to organize. Originally, we were going to to have different engineering and design firms submit different designs to compete on the physical infrastructure to support the next generation equipment tested in the Chill Off 3. But, we realized that this would be difficult to coordinate/build and we needed to have more meat in this for the participants. So, we applied the thinking to an actual eBay project that we were spinning up. The winning design would build the Phoenix data center. In early June we broke ground on a new "warehouse" data center building that would allow this to happen. It is a two story building fortified structurally to handle very dense loads. It is just a shell building ready for the DC design. We plan to have a minimum of 4MW of IT load in 8,000 SF. We also expect to achieve 100% free cooling year round in Phoenix. Yes, I said year round. We also expect to achieve multi-tier deployments in the center. We want to be able to quickly and easily add modules to the DC to achieve street-power only, N, N+1, 2N, and N(2)+1. We plan to match the tier level with the application workload.
Another unique approach to this project is that we are opening it up to a wider audience - a much wider audience - The entire Data Center industry. It touches everything physical in the data center including the IT load. So, along with the 8 firms that we have already added to our list, we are allowing anyone who meets the qualification criteria to submit a proposal.
I won't go into the detail in this blog posting, but I will fill you in one two important pieces of information.
- The RFP opens up July 7, 2010.
- The RFP responses are due August 20, 2010.
- The RFP closes on August 27, 2010.
- Construction start is planned for January 1, 2011
- Construction completion is planned for July 1, 2011
- Application - 2 weeks
- RFI responses - 4 weeks
- Selecting finalists - 1 week (internal)
- Presentations - 1 week
- eBay decision - 2-4 weeks after (internal)
2. The RFP details will be tracked through linkedin in the DCP: INDUSTRY group.
We look forward to seeing the innovation come alive this project! For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org