Let’s not mince words — energy companies have been in a pickle recently. Sure, Warren Buffett might disagree (and is investing accordingly), but on the whole, the oil and gas industry has been caught between a rock and a regulatory place. In the midst of disruption, though, a business has no choice but to adapt.
If adaptation is what drives business, then in oil and gas, the destination is untapped reserves and competitive advantages — which just leaves the question of which vehicle will get you there. Currently, advanced survey methods are a great asset for drawing deeper data insights through the help of supercomputers — supercharged workstations and servers for seismic analysis, real-time risk calculations, fraud detection, and geologic modelling. If you are, however, searching for the Tesla of business tactics here, that may be looking more and more like the model of advanced data analytics, artificial intelligence, massively scalable architectures, and other cutting-edge technologies à la hyperscalers and cloud architects.
Here’s the takeaway: securing an edge means that investment in high performance computing (HPC) and compute reserves is a must. Unfortunately, this solution isn’t an autonomous vehicle — it can be a complex undertaking that needs the right experts behind the wheel. So, in the new world of data and compute-driven adaptation, how do you find the right solutions and the right people?
The Challenge of High Performance Computing
In the past few years, some of the most powerful HPC systems for commercial research arose in the oil and gas industry, boasting mammoth memory capacity, petaflops of processing speed, and the ability to perform trillions of calculations per second.
Sounds like a sweet deal, right? Well, yes and no. These systems might be the resource that oil and gas organizations need — but actual implementation is often just out of reach due to their cost and complexity. Integrating HPC means not only acquiring the hardware, but finding a specialized, reliable, and secure home for it. That’s a big ask when you realize this level of compute power relies on a ton of nodes — think hundreds or even thousands — that are each equipped with high-end processors and connected into clusters for parallel processing.
Here’s the good news: If you play your cards right, you don’t need to worry about all that. Yes, you really can get the advantages of HPC without the prohibitive levels of complexity. Turns out, succeeding in HPC is like succeeding in a lot of business — you need to have the right connections. In this case, the connection that you need is a great wholesale colocation provider with high-performance support services.
In short, what this relationship brings is a purpose-built, highly reliable HPC data center with none of the headaches. If that sounds like everything you need to make HPC work for you, no need to read any further. You can just click here to find out more about how Stream can deliver.
Want us to break it down further? No problem — let’s unpack some of the ways wholesale colocation with an accomplished data center can make HPC systems accessible for any oil and gas operation.
Colocation, Cost, and Control
One top reason some energy companies are reluctant to dive into high performance computing is the capital expenditures. Constructing a hyperscale data center involves steep costs for land, construction, and utilities. This is where wholesale colocation comes in, as colocation facilities house IT equipment to reduce upfront costs.
An accommodating HPC data center provider also makes sure you retain your control wherever possible — you’re free to do what you know best (managing your IT equipment) while the provider supports you by doing what they know best (maintaining that mission-critical infrastructure environment). With Stream, energy companies seeking wholesale colocation for their HPC systems can opt for a private data center suite or even a build-to-suit footprint separate from any other tenants. Our commitment to being the partner you need means end-to-end collaboration (think participative, not prescriptive) every time — because we believe that procuring capacity and operating your data center should be a great experience.
Finding The Right Data Center Fit
With HPC systems in the energy industry come huge demands for space — and not all providers can support that need, especially as those systems scale. Even if a typical data center can provide the square footage you need, along with personnel to install and maintain equipment, HPC systems require atypical accommodations for success. This can mean denser rack spaces or robust ventilation and cooling systems for high-density equipment. Some data centers — like those offered by Stream — are predesigned to integrate with HPC requirements and support supercomputer deployments. Plus, with a speculative approach to investment, Stream stays a step ahead of demand while delivering actual, tangible capacity on the ground — capacity that you can deploy today. For you, this means vital speed to market that pairs beautifully with any desired scale. Space, speed and scale are table stakes in today’s world — look for a provider that treats them as such.
Here’s another requirement that can be hard to meet: High power density. If we’re talking 30kW per rack or more, a data center that’s built for traditional workloads doesn’t cut it. That’s why Stream facilities feature the necessary power (and cooling) densities to meet the demands of the HPC system.
Competitive advantage is the name of the game for players in the oil and gas industry — and HPC systems are key for getting ahead and staying ahead of the competition. If you’re looking to bring down barriers to HPC, build the best team with a wholesale colocation partnership that understands your strategy. Since Stream manages and operates its own data centers, you get the best of us from beginning to end, and you always know who’s in your corner.
Check out our Houston I data center in Texas, for instance. Strategically located in The Woodlands, this master-planned environment offers ideal energy optimization advantages, flexible and scalable infrastructure and best-in-class service experiences that keep mission-critical needs met from all angles. You can see the HPC attributes of this facility in our spec sheet here or request a virtual tour here.
It’s simple — with great people and great facilities, great results are a given. Contact us today to talk about how our custom data center and connectivity solutions can meet your HPC data center and energy sector needs.