Kao Data expands Harlow datacentre campus by opening second 10MW facility

Kao Data has begun the build-out of its second datacentre on the site of its Harlow campus several months after securing £130m in additional funding to support its expansion

High-performance computing (HPC)-focused colocation provider Kao Data is continuing to build out its datacentre footprint, with plans to add a further 10MW of capacity at its flagship site in Harlow, Essex.

The company has committed to building a second datacentre at the site, which is home to the UK’s fastest supercomputer, Cambridge-1, and confirmed that construction on the 10MW facility is already under way.

The new datacentre, dubbed KLON-02, will be built according to the same design and operational blueprint as Kao’s other sites, including following the hardware build-out principles of the Open Compute Project.

The site will have capacity to accommodate 1,800 server racks, said Kao Data, and – like its first datacentre in Harlow – is also on course to become a Nvidia DGX-Ready site.

The server racks will be spread across four technology suites, covering 3,400m2, with the site designed specifically to appeal to enterprises with compute-intensive HPC and artificial intelligence (AI) workloads.

News of Kao Data’s plans to expand its Harlow datacentre campus comes several months after the firm secured a £130m funding round to finance new sites, which include the creation of the new 16MW datacentre in Slough, Berkshire, that it announced last month.

“The new facility will build on the company’s high-performance infrastructure, energy efficiency and sustainability capabilities, providing customers with a reduced carbon footprint and low total cost of ownership over the site’s lifecycle,” said Kao Data in a statement.

KLON-02 will be a renewably powered site, with backup generators powered by hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) rather than diesel, said the company.

Read more about Kao Data

The carrier-neutral site will also benefit from access to low-latency connectivity, with links into the networks of BT Openreach, euNetworks, Jisc/Janet, the London Internet Exchange (LINX) and several others.

The company also confirmed that it will continue to lean on its partnership with global connectivity provider Megaport to give customers HPC-ready network connections into the Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform (GCP), Microsoft Azure and Alibaba public clouds.

“The expansion of our Harlow campus is another strategic milestone in Kao Data’s evolution as we continue to scale the business’s high-performance datacentre offering across the UK and Europe,” said Kao Data CEO Lee Myall.

“With our second 10MW facility in Harlow closely following the launch of our 16MW datacentre in Slough, Kao Data is bringing advanced colocation capacity at industrial scale to the west and east of London.”

Kao Data COO Paul Finch added:  “KLON-02 will build on the award-winning design and build principles of our KLON-01 facility, offering greater efficiencies for our customers’ colocation environments, and I am confident our second facility at Harlow will raise the bar again for sustainable, energy-efficient datacentres.”

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