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Open Compute Project announces OCP 2.0

Mon 9 Aug 2021

The Open Compute Project (OCP) began 10 years ago; a group of just five engineers with a common goal of enabling efficiency and scalability in the data centre.

They intended to accomplish this by improving hardware, server, and storage design and delivery – applying the same collaboration and innovation they were seeing in open-source software to advancing hardware technology.

Now, the OCP has appointed a new chair and president of the board – Rebecca Weekly, Intel’s Vice President and General Manager of Hyperscale Strategy and Execution. With new leadership comes a new direction for the OCP, announced today as OCP 2.0.

This new direction not only recognises the growth in scope and scale of the Open Compute Project but has also been adapted to accommodate changes to the business environment. These include an increase in complexity, which must be reflected in hardware, along with an increased focus on ‘sustainable, secure and manageable practices.’

To this end, the OCP 2.0 strategy groups initiatives into two separate areas of focus: Meet the Market and Seed Future Innovation.

Meet the Market initiatives deal with making changes to hardware design and delivery that address changes to consumer demand and expectations while adapting to the business environment. These initiatives include improving modularity, sustainability, and integration; as well as delivering scalable solutions that can be used for cloud or edge computing.

Seed Future Innovation initiatives, on the other hand, are aimed at ensuring that there is a framework established to ensure maximum creativity and collaboration among members of the project. To that end, these initiatives include defining market requirements and platform standards; leading innovation and market adoption of AI and ML; and focusing specifically on cooling – particularly “advanced cooling solutions, sustainable immersion cooling and cold plate designs that support use cases from the cloud to the edge.”

The group has also prioritised a sustainability initiative, to answer the growing concern with environmentally sound data centre design, construction and operation. This initiative, headed by members from Facebook, Intel and Microsoft, was created to identify best practices for vendors, suppliers and end-users to promote the re-use of hardware where possible. This will in turn reduce the environmental impact of hardware waste and replacement.

OCP Ready Certification

Over the past decade, the Open Compute Project has made advances in a number of areas. One important advancement has been in creating OCP-Ready standards: allowing a colocation data centre to demonstrate that it meets the needs of a company that is interested in deploying OCP racks or gear quickly and easily, without delay or challenges.

This certification answers a distinct need. A number of mega-corporations – like Facebook, and Intel – that are part of the OCP are large enough to build their own data centres. However, many (most) companies rely on colocation services to meet their data storage and processing needs. However, without an accepted standard for data centre facilities, it can be difficult to determine if a facility can meet a company’s requirements.

To answer this need, the OCP created a set of standards that could be widely acknowledged and accepted. A data centre that has OCP Ready certification has demonstrated that it can meet these requirements, and deploy OCP IT gear and racks at scale.

Who is OCP Ready?

To be considered OCP Ready, a data centre must have Architectural, Electrical, and Mechanical subsystems necessary to support OCP Open Racks and IT gear. Some facilities that have achieved OCP Ready certification include:

Kao Data (KDL1, London, UK)

Kao Data operates the first data centre to be certified in the UK. The Kao Data KDL1 data centre in London includes architectural features including service lifts from road level and overhead power supply and connectivity; power efficiency with a PUE of 1.2, and support for HPC and AI rollouts.

Hydro 66 (DH01, Boden, Sweden)

Hydro 66 racks have the necessary architectural features as well, including step-free, ramp-free access for racks from delivery to install; low-cost, 100% renewable energy, and 100% availability SLAs.

SpaceDC (JAK2, Jakarta, Indonesia)

The SpaceDC JAK2 facility in Jakarta is a Tier III, 2.8MW data centre with N+1 redundancy and a PUE of 1.3. Customers of JAK2 can also get an SLA promising 99.982% uptime.

The next wave of the OCP, OCP 2.0 promises to continue the work of creating standards across the data centre industry and ensuring that an open community of seasoned experts can continue to support innovation and collaboration to improve hardware design and delivery.



collaboration design hardware sustainability
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