Micron21's quest for perfect data centre uptime

What if your only desire is reliability and money is no object? You build the Micron21 data centre.

Micron21's quest for perfect data centre uptime
Image Caption: Micron21

What if your only desire is reliability and money is no object? You build the Micron21 data centre.

Okay, I made up the part about unlimited money. But James Braunegg did spend AU$10M fitting out Micron21, an Uptime accredited Tier IV data centre of 100 racks.

In search of perfect uptime

Some would say James went to insane lengths, and that such a data centre would be hard-pressed to achieve financial viability.

However, James told me that Micron21 has been cashflow positive since day one, and the retrofit has already paid for itself.

If you recall from my previous post about examples of retrofitted data centres, I first wrote about Micron21 back in 2016 for DCD. And I might have nixed the story if John Duffin hadn't vouched for it.

(Read my LinkedIn post here)

Anyway, James pinged me recently about some new videos that his team put together. And with them were some new insights into the Micron21 data centre.

Beyond Tier IV

You likely know of Uptime's Tier IV requirements of fault-tolerant design (2N), which is higher than the Tier III that most data centres go for.

James wasn't satisfied with it, so he went a step further.


  • 3N continuous diesel generator design.
  • Remote refuelling via 2 discrete paths.
  • Can run indefinitely at full load.
  • Designed for "hot" refuelling*.

* Via custom day tanks.


  • 3N cooling design (Getting familiar now?)
  • Primary + Secondary on chilled water.
  • 30,000 litres thermal storage.
  • 12 DX (direct expansion) cooling systems as tertiary.

No detail too small

Even the specs at the rack level look outsized, particularly since they have been available since 2019.


  • 30kW available to every rack**.
  • 1.2Tbps uplink; 96x 25Gbps ports.
  • 4 independent UPS-protected circuits.

** Avg global rack power is 6kW per rack in 2023, according to Uptime.

Passion for data centres

By the way, there are no Tier IV (Certification of Constructed Facility) in Singapore, though the fifth storey of Telin-3 data centre is Tier IV (Certification of Design Documents) accredited.

Ultimately, what struck me about James then (and now) was his passion and the fact that he actually studied and understood Uptime's Tier IV requirements.

The reality is that most heads of data centres are business leaders, so it was refreshing to discuss the nuts and bolts without the PR-speak.

Do you know of other data centres in the region that are built to exacting standards? Would love to hear about them!