'The new oil': Dublin strikes it rich as Europe's data hub

phys.org | 1/24/2019 | Staff
adele2234 (Posted by) Level 3
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A new industrial revolution is under way on the outskirts of Dublin.

Fortunes are being made in clusters of anonymous warehouses housing vast data centres.

Data - Oil - Brian - Roe - Director

"Data is the new oil, definitely," said Brian Roe, commercial director of Servecentric, a data centre company.

Roe is a new breed of prospector, presiding over one node in a network of 48 data centres in Ireland.

Developments - Access - Data - Power - Storage

Put simply, these powerhouse developments provide 24/7/365 access to the massive data, processing power and storage that digital services around Europe require.

"People are saying, 'Well everything is going to come from the cloud'," Roe said.

Well - Cloud - Cloud - Centres

"Well where's the cloud? The cloud is data centres."

According to industry lobby group Host in Ireland, the country has become the unlikely engine room for everything from video streaming to phone apps and social media.

Government - Incentives - Workforce - Connectivity - Europe

Government incentives, a skilled workforce and high connectivity to Europe and America are helping attract data centre construction investment which is expected to reach nine billion euros ($10 billion) by 2021.

The sector employs 5,700 people in full-time equivalent roles including 1,800 as data centre operators, according to a report produced for Ireland's investment agency.

People - 'Well - Everything - Cloud - Roe

"People are saying, 'Well everything is going to come from the cloud'," Roe said. "Well where's the cloud? The cloud is data centres"

Nestled in an industrial estate next to a motorway, Servecentric is a "co-location" site shared by multiple businesses, dwarfed by the exclusive "hyperscale" establishments of Google, Amazon and Facebook.

Lobby - Visitors - ID - Security - Guard

In the lobby, visitors are asked to present ID to a security guard. Fingerprint scanners abound and 160 CCTV cameras record footage stored for three months.

One client requires six levels of security, including airport-style checks and private guards in their portion of the centre.

Roe - Facility - Crisp - Suit - Household

Roe, touring the facility in a crisp suit, declines to say who, but says they are a "household name".

The secrecy is in service of the library-like rows of...
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