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Down to Earth from Datacloud Europe 2016

Reijo Parkkinen, Director of Data Center Business at CTS Engtec Oy,  summarize key findings, fresh after the trip to Monaco.

Clearly in the top seed

Datacloud Europe 2016 and similar event provides a possibility to benchmark one’s work to other’s. Finland’s improved and increased data center locations supported by now operational C-Lion1 subsea cable clearly held country in the top seed among data center offering nations and regions.

It was great to see that Finland’s data center locations and presentations are top quality. Naturally I was particularly pleased that sites that CTS has been working with were among the most impressive”, Mr. Reijo Parkkinen tells feelings from Monaco. “But there is always room for the improvement and I’ve got good ideas how to develop the locations and make even better presentations.

More joint efforts and less fruitless competition

Trend is towards larger regions and greater amount of sites joining offering and forming virtual datacenter clusters. This make sense in many ways. There is no point to compete site against site and campus against campus. Data center investments reflects positively to large area so exact location is not that critical. Also data center investment to one location automatically rises the region to focus and there is high probability to get a second, third and fourth investment to the area.” Mr. Parkkinen opens the reasoning and benefits of the joint efforts. “We will work with RDAs and private parties to find attractive combos and form wider and more attractive data center site portfolios.”, says Mr. Parkkinen.

Power is the key

Finland’s superior power transmission system still holds its’ importance. National grid is truly an asset to Finland. High reliability together with capacity to transfer energy produced anywhere in Finland to everywhere in the grid is not common at this scale. And Fingrid and other grid companies are constantly working to improve the grid so we will stay on the top of this listing.

In Finland we have also regional strongholds what comes to the power reliability. Many locations enjoys redundancy and capacity build for industry no longer in operation. These regional grids still have local power production in operation and two or more connections to national grid. This kind of systems can have decades long record of uninterrupted power supply.

In several discussions and in many presentations the power availability and reliability was a major topic. I was more than happy since in this category Finland among the top countries. Of course we need to keep on working and make sure that we maintain our position. This includes to keep the domestic production capacity at sufficient level.”, Mr. Parkkinen explains key parameters related to power.

Keep yourself well connected, regardless of how powerful you are.

C-Lion1 cable, operational since May, has improved connectivity for Finland but also for Europe to Russia and Asia. “Finnair, international air carrier having its’ base in Helsinki, developed highly successful Asia-Europe concept already in 90’s, a concept that is still strong and much evolved. Now similar is happening in data transmission. Finland’s geographical position combined with high capacity and low latency connectivity has created a gateway of data between East and West.”, Mr. Parkkinen sketch out, and continues “And between North and South, as well. Nordic green power and other data center favorable characteristics and now easier reachable for data processing and storing power houses.”, says Mr Parkkinen.

“Finland has very good optic fiber network and several nationwide dark fiber providers. This means that good connectivity can be enjoyed practically everywhere on Finnish soil.” Mr. Parkkinen completes on connectivity.

Is cooling a hot or cold topic?

Cold climate is definitely one advantages for of Nordics but is it still important factor when considering data center location? “Cooling is a hot topic, no doubt it. Development is continuous both in electronics cooling and heat removal from white space. These two are linked together and the development on a another feeds the other. New innovations and gradual improvement are happening all the time. Maybe the immersion cooling will be the breakthrough that evens out margins in climates. We shall see.”, Mr. Parkkinen illuminates.

My forecast is that in warmer areas we will see higher white space temperatures resulting in lower mechanical cooling. But there is a trade-off since electron is a simple creature and works harder in cold. This is true for any computer and even more important for increasing number of high performance computers. So cooler locations will attract data centers more and more.

Hence colder is better, always.“, Mr. Parkkinen ends.

What to expect?

Data center scenery will continue to diversify due to the rapidly increasing amount of data processed and stored, IoT, technological development, improving connectivity etc. So there will be more data centers in more locations and they will be in many forms. All of them are not to be built in Finland but we will have fair share as long as we evelove.”, Mr Parkkinen predicts.


You can find Reijo Parkkinen in Datacloud Europe 2016 venue in Monaco this Wednesday and Thursday.

Mr. Parkkinen’s contact details:

Mobile: +358 400 682 272



CTS Engtec is providing services for data center investors starting from site selection process and covering all the project phases up to handover of the site.  CTS has completed several Master Plans for sites in Finland and ranked close to one hundred sites. Company provides professional site selection service covering all sites in Finland. CTS has a background in data center business since 2008. Involvement includes also some of the biggest data center implementations in Finland.


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