22 April 2022

A powerful crane delivered generators on the roof of CC STOS of the Gdańsk University of Technology

The implementation of the STOS (Smart and Transdisciplinary knOwledge Services) Competence Centre of the Gdańsk University of Technology is entering a crucial phase. The first start-ups and tests on the installations of this innovative facility have already started. In order to make one of the most modern server rooms in Europe reliable, even in the event of a power failure, a powerful crane delivers two 40-tonne power generators on the roof of the building. However, this is only one of many projects that are currently being carried out on the construction site.

CC STOS of the Gdańsk University of Technology is being built on the campus of the university in Traugutta Street. This is where the headquarters of the Centre of Informatics of the Tricity Academic Supercomputer Network of the Gdańsk University of Technology will be located. The investment is to act as a multidisciplinary data collection and processing centre – in accordance with the latest global standards. The possibilities of CC STOS can also be used in scientific research in the field of, among others, physics, astronomy, as well as biotechnology and medicine. It will also support implementation research for the commercialisation of science. The most important room in the building will be the so-called “bunker”, where one of the fastest supercomputers in Poland will be located. And most importantly, all works are to be completed soon.

“The centre will be a technological showcase of the city and the region, so we are eagerly awaiting the completion of construction works and putting it into use, says Prof. Krzysztof Wilde, Rector of the Gdańsk University of Technology. “Not only our academic community is waiting for it, but also other Pomeranian universities and, above all, local industry and business,” adds the Rector.

“Actually, all the main installations are already done. We start to run everything one by one and execute start-ups, says Michał Sadowski, Project Director at NDI. “The body of the building, the roof and the facades have been finished. Most technical rooms, such as switchboards, server rooms and ventilation rooms have already been equipped. All cable routes as well as pipelines and installations have been laid.”


Communicating vessels

The contractors of the investment have made no secret of the fact that its implementation is not easy, because the facility is characterised by a significant degree of complexity – some rooms are like communicating vessels, scattered in different areas of the building.

“In terms of installation, the main challenge is multi-stage testing. The inspection and start-up of all devices practically begin at the factory, and end with checking the entire connected system and its operation already at the finished facility,” says Dominik Kardynał, Site Manager from NDI.

The server room requires special attention, as it is to meet the highest standards of data security, including protecting data from fire, water and electromagnetic fields. The supercomputer requires continuous cooling and maintaining constant air temperature and humidity. The source of technological cooling for the entire building will be five external ice water chillers, which are now being connected. In order to deliver two 40-tonne power generators on the roof of CC STOS, a huge crane with a load capacity of 500 tonnes was used.

First in Europe

Moreover, the execution of the nodes has already been completed and the phased tightness tests and insulation of the installation have started. The next step will be rinsing and filling the installation. Precision air conditioning cabinets are still to be delivered and connected.

“It will be the first such large DC server room in Europe, with great development opportunities,” emphasises Michał Sadowski, Director from NDI. “The building will be prepared for certification at the level of at least TIER III. It will also be equipped with an intelligent control system.”

“The centre is built in accordance with the assumptions of Green Computing – so as to minimise the impact of activities on the environment, and at the same time increase the energy efficiency of equipment and laboratories.”

The facility has a fully integrated security system based on access control systems, video surveillance, as well as a burglary and robbery signalling system. All systems are integrated and managed by a special server.

Completion by autumn

Some of the finishing works, e.g. in social and office areas, will be completed before the summer. All works, including start-ups and tests, will be completed by autumn.

The investment cost is almost PLN 156 million, of which PLN 90.1 million comes from EU funds obtained thanks to the involvement in the project of the Pomeranian Voivodeship Marshal’s Office. The funds that will be used by the university to provide this intelligent centre with additional equipment should also be added – the total cost of the investment will therefore exceed PLN 200 million.

NDI is responsible for the construction of the main facility with an area of approx. 12 thousand square metres and for the development of the area around it. The tasks also include the construction and equipment of rooms, as well as one of the server rooms. The investor, the Gdańsk University of Technology, is responsible for the purchase of the “supercomputer” and for the equipment of the remaining server rooms.

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