Our systems all reside in a Tier 4 data
centre in the Kent countryside an hour outside London and close to
Kent International Airport for easy transport links from London and
Europe. Our data centre is arguably one of the most secure
non-governmental data centres anywhere in the world.
Security is paramount at the data centre with layers of both
physical and electrical security layered on to each other to create
one of the only true commercial Tier 4 N+1 data centres.
We have laid out under our data centre pages in depth
information about its infrastructure. Access to the data centre is
restricted, but we are happy to show customers around the facility.
Please contact your account manager or speak to one of our sales
team to discuss the possibility of a tour.
There are two incoming 11,000 volt 3 phase electricity
authority supplies with an auto changeover facility. The primary
supply is dedicated directly from the national grid and the
secondary one is a shared supply which also feeds the buildings
above ground. The data centre also has, at present, five generators
and UPS support.
unlikely event of failure of primary supply the incoming HV circuit
breakers will, after 30 seconds, automatically change to the
Following transformation of the supply to 415V the outputs from
the two transformers are bought together at a main switchboard,
that, in turn, feeds three sub-main switchboards. Sub-main 1
supplying the technical load, sub-main 2 the plant and sub-main 3
general powers and lighting.
Emergency Power Generation
There are at present five generators on site, one above ground,
diesel set and four underground battery powered units.
Again, in the unlikely event of failure of both electricity
supplies the generator will automatically start within 30 seconds
and the electrical load will automatically transfer to it. Upon
restoration of electricity supplies and verification of their
stability, the load will be transferred back from the generator.
There should be no interruption in the power supplies to client
equipment during the changeover due to the UPS support.
Electro Magnetic Pulse Protection
When detonated, a nuclear weapon generates an electromagnetic
pulse (EMP). An EMP is an electromagnetic field that changes in
intensity at up to 50kV per nanosecond, and can induce high-energy
pulses in any conductor subjected to this changing field
Although the high-energy pulse is short, the energy to be
dissipated is sufficient to destroy unprotected communications and
other electronic equipment. It is possible for a single explosion
to induce damaging effects over an area of thousands of square
miles in diameter. The bunker has a two-stage approach to protect
against the effects of EMP:
Areas within the building structure but outside the EMP shield:
Provision of high-energy surge arrestors (voltage dependant
resistors) has been made, for all conductors entering or leaving
the building. Screening of cable runs by means of armouring,
braiding, conduit or trunking.
Areas within the EMP shield: Shielding by means of a
continuously welded 3mm thick, steel shield of all technical
equipment areas. All conductors entering this shield do so via a
penetration plate and vault and have VDRs and RFI filters
The EMP protection also serves to protect client equipment from
mains data sniffing, which is a potential risk on unfiltered mains
Earthing throughout the building takes the form of a radial or
tree system leading back to either the primary or vault penetration
plate in zone 1 and zone 2 respectively. Earth electrode systems
are installed at both penetration plates and are sized to dissipate
satisfactorily the extremely large currents that would result from
It is possible for all electronic circuits to generate an
electrical disturbance, signal or noise. This may be transmitted by
radiation (through the air) or along conductors, cables pipes etc.
This noise is known as Radio Frequency Interference (RFI).
Generally RFI is only of nuisance value to other electronic
equipment nearby. In the case of data processing and communications
equipment the consequences could be more serious. It is possible
for RFI to be generated by equipment, which can be detected and
interpreted using sensitive espionage devices at great distance
from the equipment producing such interference.
TEMPEST is a protection measure that prevents electronic
eavesdropping by containing all emanations to the locality of the
equipment generating them. It consists of a screened enclosure to
contain the radiated RFI by reflection or absorption. Supplies and
services both mechanical and electrical are treated to prevent the
conduction passage of RFI through the screen.
Many parts of the bunker are within a Tempest screen and are
therefore protected from this electronic eavesdropping.
The environment within the Bunker is an electro-pneumatic system
controlled by microprocessor.
filtered air (98%) is introduced to the bunker via a fresh air
intake air conditioning system where it is pre-conditioned. There
is the ability if needed to supply the air via activated charcoal
gas filters, which could remove gasses, biological agents or
radioactive material if required.
The introduced fresh air goes into a plenum, which supplies each
of the individual air conditioning units, serving all areas within
the bunker. Each individual area can be adjusted to create any
required environmental condition. However the general operating
conditions are 19 degrees centigrade, plus or minus 3 degrees, with
a relative humidity of between 43 - 63%.
There are three refrigerated water chillers, each capable of
producing 340kW of cooling, giving an installed cooling capacity of
1,020kW. Only two chillers can be run at any one time, resulting in
an operating capacity of 680kW with 50% redundancy. Pipes
distribute the chilled water throughout the bunker complex via
pumps to the various air conditioning and fan coil units used for
localised cooling. The chillers are themselves cooled by a
condensed water system and open evaporative cooling towers.
Fire Detection and Automatic Fire Suppression
We are continually upgrading our fire system, as new server
rooms are brought on line. Once occupied, each room is upgraded
from basic detection to detect and suppress, which complies with BS
6266 and an FM200 fire suppression system. The whole bunker is
fitted with a system, which complies with the EN 54 standard.
The fully addressable fire alarm system provides a comprehensive
system of automatic and manually initiated detection equipment.
Automatic detection, by means of heat and smoke detectors is
provided in all areas including below raised floors and above false
ceilings. A central control panel also has a repeater panel located
remotely within the guardroom.
Upon detection of a fire in server room areas, there will be an
automatic initiation of the FM200 gas suppression system to
extinguish the fire, only within the area in which the fire was
detected. FM200 is a chemical known as heptafluoropropane, which
chemically interrupts the chain reaction of a fire. Discharge time
is only 10 seconds and the extinction is rapid. At the
concentration used in computer rooms, 7.5% volume, it is safe for
humans to be present.