Datacentre in a shipping container arrives in Australia

Sun's mobile datacentre is designed to solve today's critical IT issues: cost, space, cooling and energy consumption, says the company

Sun Microsystems' Project Blackbox — a prototype of a virtualised datacentre in a 20-foot shipping container — has arrived in Australia.

Project Blackbox has been touring the globe showcasing what Sun calls "the future of green computing" and will visit Sydney and Canberra during its four-day Australian visit before going back to the US.

"Project Blackbox is Sun’s latest eco innovation designed to provide flexibility and meet customer demand for green IT solutions," says Duncan Bennet, acting managing director of Sun Microsystems Australia and New Zealand.

"Project Blackbox is a prototype of the data centre of the future — designed to solve today’s critical IT issues: cost, space, cooling and energy consumption," he says.

Hundreds of IT professionals from business and government have registered to tour through Project Blackbox, which will be located in Sydney’s Darling Harbour on 17 December before it moves to Old Parliament House in Canberra on 19 December, says the company.

The prototype is a modular datacentre. It is designed to be deployed anytime, anywhere there is a power, water and network connection.

In addition, it has been designed with an integrated water cooling system, making it 40% more energy efficient than traditional datacentres, says Sun.

The mobile datacentre is designed with modular units to fit standard shipping container dimensions.

Project Blackbox delivers a range of operating systems for SPARC to x64 based systems; up to 700 CPUs, 2240 cores and 17,920 compute threads. It delivers more than three petabytes of storage; 4.5 teraflops; 405,000 web operations per second; 101 GB/sec; and shock absorption for safe transport and shipping, according to Sun.

Project Blackbox will be available in Australia from March 2008 and pricing will start at A$700,000.

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