Backup Services: How Data Centers Keep Your Business Powered-On Amid Storms

Backup Services: How Data Centers Keep Your Business Powered-On Amid Storms

Historic storms pummelled many parts of the nation this week, allowing local data centers to test their redundancy systems. As data centers maintained uptime for their customers, it showcases how these modern-day facilities safeguard customers’ critical technology gear. 

Glacial weather sent Texas reeling with widespread and rolling power outages from a crippled power grid. Outages occurred just as consumers were turning their thermostats up amid freezing temperatures. Millions of residents lost power during the storm, and due to cascading challenges, hundreds of businesses across a wide range of sectors were forced to close their doors.

Businesses Supported By Data Center Partners Maintain Operations During Extreme Weather Events

Statewide weather events and disasters like this are not as unusual as they once were. According to the latest United Nations report, natural disasters have increased from 4,212 events to 7,348 events when comparing the prior 20 years to the two decades that preceded it. Events like this disrupt businesses, supply chains halt when roads are impassable, and fracturing occurs in core services, making it difficult to transact business.

How can companies cope with the disrupted service caused by extreme events? 

Businesses with a suitable data center partner can breathe a little easier.  Datacenter operators provide the infrastructural backbone for companies and cloud services. A data center system has built-in redundancy to ensure that your company can maintain essential business operations and host customers’ services, despite weather events. Your critical IT equipment is also protected from power and internet disruptions since power outages harm IT systems and result in lost data, corrupt files, and damaged equipment.

Backup Systems Provide Critical Uptime For Data Center Customers

Element Critical data centers, like most data center facilities, run on utility power. They are also equipped with battery-powered UPS systems and generators to deliver operational availability throughout a crisis. This essential power infrastructure prevents downtime because onsite power generation is available when the utility power fails. This lightens the load on an impacted power grid while delivering 100 percent uptime for customers.

Data centers are designed for redundancy. This means they have a backup for all critical systems including power, cooling, and backup for data. Data centers with 2N architectures for cooling and power have a mirrored system that is duplicated all the way to the customer servers, for greater reliability.  

In the event utility power kicks off, a UPS instantly kicks into service via battery power, always protecting the power load during temporary outages or fluctuations.  A power transfer switch connects the utility power and generator power, seamlessly transferring the power load during a disruption.  Power transfer switches also send an activation signal to the generator when the power source needs to change. Once the generator has warmed up, the power transfer switch transitions from the utility power to the generator, where electricity is then produced in-house. 

The data center itself doesn’t even flinch during this time; the perfectly time capacity delivery systems are in place to handle power imperatives. 

When the utility power is ready to resume, the transfer switch transitions between the generator and the UPS power. All these systems are redundant within the data center to deliver continuous power resources. In this scenario, one or more generators supply the data centers with enough power to lighten or remove their load on the power grid entirely, sustaining operations independent of utility power.

Supplemental to the generator and UPS hardware, our facilities are equipped with fuel storage tanks to support generators that provide backup electricity during emergency operations. When storm events are known in advance, Element Critical engages a preparedness plan that includes working with supply chain partners to top off stored fuel supplies and arrange for advanced deliveries.  

Regular planning and testing are vital to account for and handle today’s data centers’ complex needs. Our data center managers make it their first priority to run regular testing on all systems with a planning mindset to prepare for failures. They follow strict processes to pinpoint problem areas before they trigger other problems.  And the backup systems are maintained to be ready for any outage. 

On-Premise Servers Require Backup Systems To Avoid Downtime

Some businesses like hospitals must have generators in place, similar to a data center; they can maintain continuity and services during disasters. However, many small to large businesses may not have an ideal plan to cope with server downtime or protect their IT equipment. 

Power outages can happen anytime. If your business relies on IT uptime, even your on-premises servers require a backup system integrated directly into the power infrastructure to ensure that the critical systems stay online, even when the lights go out. Your organization will also need to have staff available to support these systems because power outages are harmful to IT systems and can result in lost data, corrupt files, and damaged equipment.

Businesses feel the staggering effects of downtime for a long time. The good news is that your organization can eliminate business interruptions and secure your business’s continuity with a local data center partner whose core mission ensures your customer IT infrastructure is powered, cooled, protected, online and secure.  

Before downtime strikes, give us a call at Element Critical, and let’s discuss your organization’s data availability and put together a plan to support your business.  

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