Orange builds datacentre in Normandy to boost cloud services

Telecoms operator Orange, has built a 16,000m² datacentre facility in Val-de-Reuil, Normandy

Telecoms operator Orange has built a 16,000m² datacentre facility in Val-de-Reuil, Normandy to host data and services for Orange business customers and general users. The datacentre will boost its cloud computing offers and also to support the Group’s own IT transformation.

The new datacentre infrastructure in France is part of the company’s strategy to meet the growing demand for IT services. The facility, known as Normandy, includes 5,000 m² of computer room space.

It also completes the worldwide infrastructure for Orange datacentres, which includes 16 sites in France and more than 50 around the world, and represents an investment of more than €100m.

The telecoms provider claims the datacentre infrastructure is built with new-generation technologies and is innovative, energy efficient, resilient and highly secure. The facility is designed to help Orange meet the growing demand for hosted data and accelerate the deployment of the cloud computing architectures of tomorrow, the company said.

The company selected the Normandy region to host the new datacentre because of the number of advantages the region offers, such as weather conditions that will help the company use free-air cooling – a datacentre cooling technique that helps enterprises optimise energy consumption in datacentres and helps reduce power consumption from mechanical cooling equipment such as air-conditioning units. Free-air cooling also helps enterprises cut carbon emissions from their IT infrastructure.

The Normandy Orange datacentre uses the ambient air to cool the computer equipment for 11 months in a year, thereby reducing the use of artificial air-conditioning for more than 80% of the year, according to the company.

The Orange datacentre has become one of the biggest IT facilities in France to use free-air cooling. According to the telecommunications provider, the savings made at the Val-de-Reuil IT site equates to the annual domestic electricity consumption of a town of about 30,000 people.

The datacentre has received the French High Environmental Quality (HQE) Standard certification -- a standard for green building in France. This certification is an illustration of the efforts made by Orange to reduce its impact on the environment as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility strategy, Orange said.

The growth of data traffic on the networks and the development of cloud computing over the coming years make this powerful datacentre a project with a future for Orange and for its customers, the company said.

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