Subsea cables are the underpinning of global communications. Cables traverse the seas and ultimately connect to terrestrial networks at Cable Landing Stations (CLS) on-shore where they interconnect to data centers. Not much wider than a garden hose, these systems power the internet and support all of the bandwidth needed to fuel our smart phones, applications, social media, data, video and all of the new technologies currently in development. In the past few years, we have seen a wave of new projects and systems led by traditional carriers, as well as new entrants in the market. Last year alone, over 62k miles of submarine cables were added globally, as reported by SubTel Forum.
Web giants, hyperscale cloud companies and content providers, are building out their own systems to capitalize on new technologies, increase capacity, realize greater efficiencies and control the massive amounts of data that flows from continent to continent.
The US West coast - around LA and surrounding areas in particular - is experiencing a boom of subsea cable builds, the most activity in over 15 years, with cable systems such as:
Experts predict that, by 2019, the Asia-Pacific region will generate the most web-traffic in the world – double the volume generated in North America. As a result, data centers like West 7 Center serve a critical role as reliable colocation partners, providing mission-critical infrastructure and support for the flow of data from the US across the Pacific Ocean.
West 7 Center located in the heart of downtown LA, and provides a secure juncture point for organizations that not only require large colocation footprints, but also want low latency connectivity. Our location provides the added advantage of proximity, which is essential for content delivery, IoT applications, mission-critical workloads, finance and media. Telcos can establish backhaul from West 7 Center to other CLS and the many infrastructure nodes in the region.
With 16 global and domestic carriers on-site and 172,000 square feet of space available, West 7’s Tier III facility offers an attractive and reliable gateway to Asia and can be a reliable and secure point across the end-to-end infrastructure that is needed on the terrestrial side of the subsea cables.
We can expect to see more capacity projects and growth in this arena as global telecom operators try to keep pace with the incredible demand for internet, data and voice traffic – coming from Latin America, Asia and Europe, into the US.
When we think of threats to data centers, images of hackers infiltrating a complex network to breach firewalls to steal or damage data often come to mind. But as the wildfires in California demonstrate, there are a number of physical security threats caused by natural disasters that need to be addressed by the data center industry.
The damage produced by the recent wildfires in California is nothing if not staggering. With nearly 1.7 million acres that have burned across the state, the devastation may be heartbreaking, but long from being fully assessed. Time will tell just how destructive these fires were for the properties and the lives impacted by this tragedy.
As we enter the Thanksgiving holiday, we’d like to take a moment to say thanks to the brave individuals who risk their lives to fight wildfires like those taking place currently in California. Their bravery and commitment to this ensuring the safety of others does not go unnoticed in this difficult time. The selflessness found in their service to their communities is nothing if not consistent with the spirit of giving that is central to the upcoming holiday season.
While these fires may not reach the centers of metropolitan areas like Los Angeles, they do give us the opportunity to reflect on how important physical security is to the entire data center industry.
As we’ve outlined in our recent ebook on data security, facilities like our West 7 Center can be designed to mitigate the negative impacts that disasters like wildfires may have on infrastructure, offering security in even the most precarious of circumstances. By housing data centers underground, many of the physical threats are eliminated.
Although underground data centers and colocation facilities may have been a trend throughout Europe for quite some time, West 7 Center’s choice to design its facility with physical security best practices in mind demonstrates how we place a premium on meeting the needs of our clients. From multiple 24/7 guard stations to sorting mission-critical infrastructure underground, we’ve designed our facility to protect against the most threatening disasters, whether they be man-made or natural.
As the California wildfires continue to be addressed by emergency personnel, we hope that our clients can rest assured that their data is in good hands by being placed in a state-of-the-art, secure underground facility in metro Los Angeles.