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Modular data centers move toward widespread adoption

By Max Burkhalter
August 11, 2014

The first modular data centers were intended to be a solution for isolated areas where building a traditional brick and mortar facility was not a feasible option. However, the efficiency and flexibility of the modular data center has caught the attention of the entire industry. Recent data and new construction projects reflect the modular model is on its way toward being widely utilized by data center projects across the country.

Unimpeded growth
Research performed by MarketsandMarkets points toward substantial adoption of the modular data center model in the coming years. The study predicts that the modular data center market will transform from a $6.5 billion industry in 2014 to a $26 billion business in 2019. The report notes that this surge in interest will be driven by businesses seeking cost-efficient solutions for developing a data center and companies who have recently reached the capacity of their data storage. Firms with pre-existing data centers can easily connect to new hardware through fiber to Ethernet solutions. Markets across the globe, including the Middle East and Latin America, are predicted to see sharp increases in modular data center business.

Ambitious projects
Tech companies have responded to new advancements in modular data centers by making large investments. Developer IO, for example, recently constructed an 829,000-square-foot modular data center on the coast of New Jersey. The facility was designed in part as a strategy to draw business away from traditional multi-tenant data centers with the practical advantages of the modular model. IO has had great success in attracting major companies to its services. The New Jersey facility already hosts Goldman Sachs, a leading Bitcoin mining project and one of the country's top travel sites.

Modular benefits
It's no surprise that modular data centers are gaining popularity given the infrastructure's numerous design perks. Data Center Knowledge points toward scalability as the model's most attractive advantage. A company's data management can reach capacity far sooner than anticipated. Modular data centers are able to evolve to meet capacity needs and can greatly reduce the costs of expanding a facility. Companies are also turning to modular data centers for their efficiency. Densely stacked modules are easier to cool and make the most of a client's physical space.

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