DCN April 2016 - Page 40

structured testing TEST RESULTS A new data centre is expected to operate continuously for the design life of the facility. Even the shortest outage to the power or cooling systems can be disastrous to the IT services operating in the data centre. Equipment failure and replacement strategies must be included in the design and implementation. Dave Wolfenden of HeatLoad explains how thorough testing of the data centre before it is handed over will ensure the new facility meets up to expectations. A ny form of testing needs to take a structured approach. It doesn’t matter whether you are testing software, hardware, a data centre or doing the MOT on a car. Without a structured approach it is easy to miss things that could later turn out to be a major challenge. ASHRAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air40 Conditioning Engineers) defines five levels of testing:  evel 1 – Factory acceptance L testing  evel 2 – Field component L verification  evel 3 – System Construction L verification Level 4 – Site acceptance testing  evel 5 – Integrated System L Testing (IST) Level 1 to 3 testing begins with testing individual components at the manufacturing plant; such as fully testing a UPS. As construction progresses, systems are tested together to ensure all of the components operate together as a complete system, as designed. Typically this level of testing utilises large load banks located outside of the IT space. For example, the load banks test the load capacity of