With the need to be connected 24x7, the demand for data centres has continued to grow year in, year out. They not only help keep vital services running, but also keep products and companies working around the clock, across the globe. There are thousands of data centres located around the world, ranging in size and the demand keeps on increasing rapidly. According to The Synergy Research Group, hyperscale data centres have tripled since 2013 to 504, with the U.S housing around 40%.
After the United States the most popular locations are China, Japan, UK, Germany, Australia and Canada. Amazon and Microsoft opened the highest number of new data centres in 2019, making up more than half of all new data facilities opening worldwide. And in 2018, Microsoft even sunk a data centre in the sea, in an experiment to see if they could expand upon their commitment to provide 100% energy efficient data centre solutions.
John Dinsdale, Research Director at Synergy Group said: “There were more new hyperscale data centres opened in the last four quarters than in the proceeding four quarters, with activity being driven in particular by continued strong growth in cloud services and social networking. This is good news for wholesale data centre operators and for vendors supplying the hardware that goes into those data centres. In addition to the 504 current hyperscale data centres we have visibility of a further 151 that are at various stages of planning or building, showing that there is no end in sight to the data centre building boom.”
So, what and where do we believe the top ten largest data centres are in the world – right now?
No. 5 – Kolos Data Centre, Norway
At 6.5 million square feet, Kolos is the largest data centre in Europe. The facility aims to be 100% powered by renewable energy and predicts to consume up to 1000 megawatts of power by 2027.
No. 4 – Harbin Data Centre, China
This facility covers 7.1 million square feet and is owned by China Mobile, one of the world’s largest telecommunications companies. The centre consumes a staggering 15000 megawatts of electricity, which they get from 100% renewable sources.
No. 3 – The Citadel, USA
The Citadel, located in Nevada operates on 100% renewable energy. The facility is 7.2 million square feet and due to its location can deliver millisecond fibre links to Los Angeles, making it one of the quickest data centres in the world.
No. 2 – China Mobile Hohot
China Mobile Hohot is the second largest data centre in the world at 7.7 million square feet. The centre cost a whopping $2 billion to build and provides 4G networking to customers all over the world.
No. 1 – China Telecom Data Centre
China Telecom is a gargantuan facility spanning a total of 10.7 million square feet and houses call centres, warehouse, offices and accommodations for employees and can only be described as resembling a small city. Due to its location the centre can take advantage of the low temperatures, which provide the facility with free air cooling for up to eight months a year.
Data centres are crucial to almost every aspect of modern life, from Government services to social networking. We rely upon data centres for everyday activities like booking a flight or sending a text message, we depend on data centres in the same way we depend upon electricity. We will probably never get to see these data centres in person, but it is probable that you have one onsite at your place of work. If you don’t know maybe you should ask where all your data is being stored and processed from.