Giving Brains to a 30 Foot Sign
Denver Convention Center Sign Installation for Yesco, Inc.
• To install multiple 30-foot signs at the Denver Convention Center
• To run Signs from inside the building, saving the huge headache of maintaining PCs in outdoor conditions.
• Normal DVI cabling only covers 15-20 feet, maximum. Need a solution that runs further.
• To run a fiber solution grade that can handle both indoor and outdoor conditions.
• Manage non-standard conversion boxes at both sign access and PC.
• Indoor/Outdoor Armored Plenum 12-strand Fiber chosen for durability and quality connection.
• Fiber Fusion Spliced directly to converter boxes at sign provides maximum data fidelity.
• Fiber patch panel installed at rack allows easy exchange of PCs in the future.
• Test connections rigorously with Fluke DTX 1800.
Yesco installed two very large scale LED signs at the Denver Convention Center. They needed to run the signs from a PC installed in the Center’s main communications rack. This saved them from the huge headache of managing outdoor PC equipment installed directly into the sign. Unfortunately, normal DVI connection cables only run 15-20 feet, not nearly far enough to reach the signs 400 feet away.
We proposed a fiber optics solution. Using our Fitel S121m Fusion Splicer, we spliced fiber directly to the conversion box in the sign and ran it to a fiber patch panel in the communications rack. We then connected it directly to a networked PC managed remotely.
Yesco bolted their signs in place and we got to work. They installed the underground piping that allowed us to run fiber cables. We chose an Armored Plenum Fiber Cable for its outdoor durability and high connection quality. We used our Fitel Fusion Splicer to directly connect to the DVI converter box installed in the sign. This solution would allow the signal to travel as far as 1400 feet without any data loss.
We ran the fiber into a patch panel directly installed in the communications rack at the convention center and then into the DVI converter box of the PC. This solution allows for ease of swapping PCs in the future. The cabling was well structured and carefully installed, to prevent any other teams in the communication room from upsetting the connections. It would be very embarrassing if the Convention Center signs were shut off by a telecom operator accidentally breaking a connection.
We worked directly with Yesco’s Master Electrician. He was on site to wire the high voltage connections to the sign, while we handled the low voltage data connections. We pride ourselves on being easy to work with and helpful. Our goal is to work together to get the job done, so we pitched in and set up the PC.
All of our projects are thoroughly tested using the Fluke DTX 1800. The Fluke is the highest end testing kit on the market. It allowed us to be absolutely certain that our connections were the highest quality and met the most rigorous IT standards. Because Yesco used a non-standard connection, we purchased new fiber modules for the Fluke to confirm that the connection gave the highest data integrity. Testing with the Fluke DTX 1800 helped us confirm that our connections are the best in the industry.
Building a Perfect-Fit Data Center
Range Fuels is a start up Green Energy Company that makes Biofuels. They needed a data center solution that could easily scale as their company grows.
• Build a Data Center for a growing company. Needs to Scale
• Fit Budget
• Limited Space
• Maximum Capacity
• Reusable Materials
• Energy Efficient
• Flexible Data Center Planning
• Reusable APC Cabinets with external digital readouts
• Scalable Cooling System that fits into a small footprint
• Expandable UPS
• Color Coded and Carefully Organized Wiring with Smart Wiring Covering
Working with IT Professionals.
We understand the pressures and unique challenges of today’s IT professionals. We worked with the Range Fuels team to help upgrade their previous data center at Celestial Seasonings. When it came time for them to design a data center from scratch, they asked us to help plan the project correctly from the start. The team at Range Fuels had extensive experience running network and data storage systems, they brought us in to fill in their knowledge gaps of cooling, universal power supply, data cabinets and structured wiring. Because everyone who worked on the project had an engineering background, we knew we could build a system that was a perfect fit.
One of the reasons we love working with the Range Fuels team, is because we appreciate learning from some of the best IT personnel in the business. We share ideas and work as a team to design a solution that fits their data needs as well as their budget and space constraints.
Flexibility for Changing Needs
We understand that a start up organization has shifting priorities that present a unique challenge to design. The first iteration of the Data Center design was planned around extremely aggressive growth. The team set out to build a large data center that would accommodate a fast ramp up of personnel and extremely fast uptake of fuel products. The company and the market then shifted expectations and we all went back to the drawing board. Throughout the process the IT team had to juggle changing budgets, data center locations, growth projections, and timelines. We understand that this is the norm, rather than the exception in the modern IT environment, so we helped them design and redesign the plans as priorities shifted.
We also realized that growth and flexibility would always be subject to the whim of the marketplace. We helped the IT team design a data center that would be very scalable with the number of servers and storage devices it can handle. We also helped them design a system with reusable pieces, so if the data center needs to be moved in the future, we can reassemble the pieces. We believe flexibility is essential in both the design and planning stage, and in the equipment we use in our data installation.
Finding the Right Vendors
We pride ourselves in sourcing equipment that meets the needs of our customers. Our data center vendor Liebert’s products didn’t fit the needs of the Range Fuels team. We evaluated the available products from other vendors and eventually agreed that APC best fit our needs. We built a relationship with APC, and agreed to sell their products because it was the best fit for our clients’ project.
We also concluded that the data needs of their system didn’t require expensive network cable Cat 6 cables, instead we opted for the more appropriate Cat 5E cables, saving their company money and still providing the necessary bandwidth for running the system. Little steps like using specific wire colors for each data centric task and using Chatsworth Wire Covers make managing the equipment easier on the IT professionals.
Data Center Design
After several top-directed redesigns of the data center, we finally settled on the right number of cabinets, universal power supplies, cooling systems, and structured wiring to fit their needs. We took advantage of as much space as possible by building an ultra-modern system that sits directly on the floor instead of a raised platform. This allowed us to use full-height cabinets and maximize the number of server slots. The cooling systems vent to the back, keeping the systems at optimal temperature. The cabinets allow for additional power supplies and cooling units to be added as they scale. All of the data center metrics like temperature and power usage can be monitored from the cabinet displays, so the IT professionals know at a glance if their systems are running optimally or it’s time for an upgrade.
We know how mission critical a data center is to a growing company. We also understand that function follows form, and building a system correctly from the start can save a company huge headaches in the future. That’s why we always source the best products, design and layout the best structured wiring, and work directly with our clients to choose the right design to fit their needs.
Wiring the Office of the Future
J.Comm is building the telecommunications and information systems infrastructure for a Fortune 500 Company’s new Denver office space.
• A large, multinational company is building a new office in Denver.
• They need a structured data solution for 700 office spaces.
• They need a sophisticated system that will allow them to do video conferencing, real-time project collaboration, and remotely control oil exploration across the globe.
• IT needs a tremendous amount of flexibility in the construction for an evolving spec.
• They need a contractor who can provide all materials and manage costs for a $250,000 job.
• Structured wiring package that is professionally designed and built to allow IT flexibility in design
• Multiple Data Ports to each office Space for computer, VOIP solution.
• Data capacity large enough to handle future traffic needs
• Flexible Data Center design allowing IT to expand their solution as technology needs evolve.
• Engineering and experience on the job site to help solve problems as they arise
• Fiber data connection for LCD displays
J.Comm is building a 21st Century office space in Denver for a Fortune 500 oil and gas company. They needed us to design and plan a data center that is large scale enough to meet the technology needs of an expanding industry. Each of the 700 office spaces require multiple connections for computer terminals and VOIP phones. The conference rooms will have large LCD displays for collaboration and video conferencing and require fiber connections because of distance.
The company is also building a remote operation center for oil and gas discovery. All of the discovery systems will be run from the new facility. Unfortunately, as is often the case in IT, the systems are not finalized. Our data center design and infrastructure needs to be flexible and powerful enough to handle the final needs of the complex, meaning we have to anticipate future use without a finalized spec.
Flexibility for the Realities of IT Design and Planning
Often in IT, specs and needs aren’t finalized when construction begins. In the case of J.Comm’s project, some of the technologies for the center hadn’t been invented yet. Our goal is to provide ample data capacity for anticipated needs and choose a data center platform that can grow with changing technology.
When it comes to the structured wiring, it’s much easier to build it right from the start than to reinstall additional wires in the future. We carefully installed miles of Cat 5E cabling throughout the building. Each line was carefully tested with our Fluke DTX 1800 to confirm data fidelity for the most demanding projects.
On a project this size, one of the biggest challenges is working around the timetables of other subcontractors. Our Data Center install is contingent on the heating and air conditioning contractors installing the cooling units and power supplies as well as the electricians and construction team. Because we’ve been working construction sites for 15 years, we always do our part to be flexible and accommodating when projects take longer than anticipated.
Working with 21st Century Technologies
Each office space has a conference room with large LCD displays. These displays allow the technical staff and managers to work on specific projects in real time. A technician can point out a problem on his desktop screen and the whole team can move to the conference room to collaborate on a solution. Unfortunately, normal video cabling can’t handle data transfer across such large distances. We installed high capacity Cat 6 Network Cabling across the office to allow the large transmission of video data from any terminal in the building. We also needed to install a a separate converter box at each LCD screen and connect the entire system to matrix switching hardware in the main data center. Because of this central hub design, the system is scalable for other large projects like video conferencing as it becomes more prevalent in the future.
The Denver office will be the hub for remote oil and gas exploration control systems. This will allow the company to have a central location to monitor their global energy explorations. Technicians can monitor up to 6 rigs across the globe from a single desk in Denver. Drilling experts can direct exploration equipment with a small skeleton crew of technicians on site. Unfortunately, as is often the case in IT, the system was not yet finalized when construction began. Our job is to build the Data Center and structured wiring needs to meet this future demand. J.Comm was able to get a rough idea of the data needs of this platform and we were able to propose solutions that will be more than adequate for the system’s needs.