NYSE Euronext broadens tech access to massive UK data centre

Flexible co-lo and liquid cooled servers on the menu

NYSE Euronext has dramatically broadened access to its UK data centre, which is located in Basildon and went live in late 2010.

The data centre houses all of NYSE Euronext's European markets including Amsterdam, Lisbon, Paris, Smartpool and the NYSE Liffe derivative markets. NYSE Euronext has also been adding a number of third party exchanges, including Bourse de Luxembourg and Sigma-X into the facility which is around the size of six and half football pitches.

Basildon is the European equivalent of NYSE Euronext's US facility in Mahwah, New Jersey, housing its US markets - principally the New York Stock Exchange and ARCA.

Tariq Rashid, managing director of European colocation at NYSE Euronext, told Computerworld UK that the exchange had made a number of technology changes to allow smaller and more varied capital markets firms to have easier access to the markets.

"Originally many people saw colocation as the preserve of larger firms that were able to make big investment in the required technology infrastructure, but now we have set up the space and have policies that allow smaller companies to take part. We allow all capital market participants into colocation and allow them to start with smaller colocation footprints such as half a rack if that's all they need," he said.

"We're also setting up a colocation 'compute on demand' service," Rashid said. "We provide a fully managed platform for those firms that wish to start trading quickly without having to source hardware themselves - it's something we already do for our US markets in Mahwah and allows us to simplify the process for smaller firms/trading desks wishing to start to trade quickly from colocation."

The exchange group is also opening up connectivity options for firms wishing to connect from Basildon to the markets by allowing telecoms firms to set up their own connectivity into the data centre, and even allowing businesses to set up their own microwave aerials on the roof of the centre. Firms now have the choice of NYSE Euronext's SFTI network or to build their own telco connectivity directly into the facility for the first time.

"Microwave is becoming increasingly popular as it can be even faster than fibre," said Rashid. "They do still have bandwidth and atmospheric limitations but can offer unmatched latency around 30 to 40 percent faster than fibre. We want to help firms pursuing this route."

Another new innovation is the ability of the Basildon facility to support the latest liquid cooled server technology which allows it's colocation customers run their trading applications at faster speeds. This is due to the fact that Basildon was designed from the outset with under floor water cooling into its data halls. Rashid said that "the need for low-latency trading is constantly fuelling innovation within the financial services industry. We are delighted to be able to support this technology which helps our clients trade more efficiently".

Finally, the exchange has been increasing the green credentials of the facility by building one of the largest solar panel installations in Europe on its roof and which supplies up to 600kW of power at peak times.

NYSE Euronext has established a plan for the next 20 years of the Basildon data centre and expects to make a number of extra developments as trading demands change.

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