DC Blox has expanded its data center in Birmingham, Alabama, to cater for high-performance computing (HPC) workloads.

The company said it has completed a redesign of its data hall at the facility so that it can house up to 240 standard retail cabinets and 36 HPC-capable cabinets, each supporting up to 35kW of power. The work has added an additional IT capacity of 2.4MW to the data center.

DC Blox Birmingham data center – DC Blox

It has undertaken the work in response to “surging demand for HPC applications driven by several factors, including the availability of cost-effective HPC systems based on commodity hardware, specialized processor accelerators such as GPUs, and the escalating utilization of AI/ML applications,” a DC Blox statement said.

“This expansion underscores DC Blox’s steadfast dedication to empowering the technology-based economy of Birmingham and beyond,” said Jeff Uphues, CEO of DC Blox. “Our innovative mixed-hall design and HPC capability are testaments to our commitment to respond to the specific needs of our customers in Birmingham. And our new HPC-enabled data hall can be added to the data centers in any of our markets, as demand requires.”

DC Blox’s Birmingham data center originally opened its doors in July 2019, with 13,000 sq ft (1,207 sqm) of office space and 18,000 sq ft (1,672 sqm) of data center space. The site’s HPC expansion was announced in 2022, and the company says the campus has the potential for up to 50MW of capacity.

The data center is used by customers including the University of Alabama (UAB). Ralph Zottola, AVP for UAB Research Computing, said DC Blox is one of the university’s “key partners,” and added: “The facility, operations, and staff enable us to design and deploy cutting-edge cyberinfrastructure in support of the world-class research conducted at The University of Alabama at Birmingham.

“From tailoring custom colocation solutions to meet emergent needs during a crisis [Covid-19] to constructing a new data hall engineered and equipped with the infrastructure to deliver the denser power and cooling necessary for high-performance computing, the DC BLOX team has proven to be a true partner to UAB Research Computing.”

DC Blox runs data centers across the southeastern states of the US, and recently announced plans for a new campus in Rockdale County near Atlanta, Georgia.