R&M, the globally active developer and provider of cabling systems for high-quality network infrastructures, based in Wetzikon, Switzerland, is forecasting new challenges for traditional data centers. On the road to cloud computing, data centers will have to modernize and extend their networks to be able to provide resources more flexibly. And they have to extend their fiber-optic cabling. "The start into the era of the private and hybrid cloud and the leap from 10 to 40 or 100 Gigabit Ethernet can be mastered with flat architectures and the hyperscale concept. Sooner or later even ordinary data centers will have to turn into hyperscale data centers," predicts Dr. Thomas Wellinger, R&M Market Manager Data Center.
R&M market surveys show that this trend is already starting and colocation data centers as well as some enterprise data centers have a few obstacles to overcome. "A typical example: The cable entry into the building and the cabinet for splitting the multitude of outside cables are not suitable for hyperscale design," explains Dr. Thomas Wellinger. Conventional cabinets were not designed for the flexible scaling of cabling. And cable routing, breakout and splice components often turn out to be user-unfriendly.
The development team at the North American R&M site Milpitas, California, is looking into the current requirements of colocation data centers in detail. The BEF 60 splice cabinet was created based on extensive experience with large-volume FO distribution cabinets and best practice studies. BEF stands for building entrance facility. Its total capacity is 23,040 splices. 384 fibers can be managed in each of its 60 stackable splice trays. Dr. Thomas Wellinger: "With the BEF 60, R&M is once again underscoring its role as a leading developer of high-density FO systems. This platform is the fast track for colocation and enterprise data centers into the hyperscale world - the ideal starting point for scalable, future-proof spine and leaf topologies." One of the world's largest colocation data center providers has just recently opted for an extensive installation of BEF 60 cabinets, reports R&M.
R&M sees a growing need for splice platforms such as BEF 60 and hyperscale solutions in the enterprise segment. "Cloud applications and the Internet of Things are growing into corporations. Today there are already 8.4 billion things networked with each other worldwide. Every day more and more enterprises are integrating complete production systems, buildings, offices, applications, storage and lots more into a private or external cloud. This trend is presenting a major challenge to the networks," says Dr. Thomas Wellinger. R&M estimates that high count fiber installations and hyperscale infrastructures are the only answer when it comes to medium- and long-term planning. Enterprise data centers can orient themselves to the experiences of the public cloud giants.
Hyperscale data centers have an incredibly scalable computing architecture which can be managed like a single unit. Hyperscale solutions allow operators to start out modestly with lower investments and then react accordingly to growing demand. They can thus immediately aggregate or extend their networks smoothly without having to interrupt operations. Hyperscale capability is based in particular on there being an available mass of optical fibers. High count fiber cables with more than 2000 or 4000 multi fiber cables are typically needed to cover the connectivity requirement. Currently major cloud service providers are implementing the hyperscale concept so they can adapt their computing performance to suit the market at all times. The hyperscale data center market is currently growing at around 20% on average every year and in 2022 will reach an estimated volume of 71.2 billion USD.