Thursday, 27th February 2020

Giving data centres an edge

In 2009, Corning introduced a data centre solution that would reduce installation time, save energy and use space more efficiently. By drawing on Corning's fiber innovations, this new solution allowed data centre operators to simplify their layout and pave the way for future upgrades.

It was the EDGE data centre solution -- the industry’s first pre-terminated optical cabling system specifically designed for the data centre environment. Six years later, Corning extended its leadership in data centre innovation with EDGE8 -- allowing operators to migrate simply and cost-effectively to transmission speeds of up to 400 gigabits per second.

EDGE solutions are now deployed in over 50,000 data centresin 30 countries. EDGE8 has won at least nine awards around the world.Now, as EDGE turns 10 years old, it's fascinating to reflect on how it changed the data centre environment -- and what it has made possible.

Consider Altice Portugal, the country’s largest provider of telecommunication services. Altice started building a new data centre in Covilhã, Portugal, in 2011 to replace decommissioned sites and to address future challenges such asthe need for increased cable density.

Altice selected Corning’s EDGE solution for its optical fiber cabling, which delivered the required speed, density and simplicity for the Covilhã data centre. The first phase of the centre opened in 2013 with six 500 m2 IT rooms and an additional 9,000 m2 of white space for development.

"We’ve been using EDGE™ since 2013, and it has allowed us to increase the number of servers inside each rack and increase the energy, density and efficiency of our data centre," said Jorge Emanuel Cavaleiro, Data Centre Manager, AlticePortugal.

Altice implemented EDGE in other migration projects, too, and in 2019 began testing EDGE8® in the storage area network. “The future is bright, and we have an infrastructure that is futureproof to address the challenges driven by Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, and Big Data,” Miguel Covas, Head of Infrastructure at Altice explained. “We are ready to start to deploy 400G infrastructures if needed. So, we are very confident that we are prepared.”

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