Skip to content
Running smoothly – data center commissioning done right

Running smoothly – data center commissioning done right

9.4.2021 – Successful data center commissioning (Cx) ensures that the data center works like it is designed to – without downtime and with reasonable redundancy. To achieve this, no corners can be cut in the commissioning process.


In the world of data centers, technical systems such as constant cooling capacity and electrical power are directly critical to business. As essential it is to commission any facility correctly, commissioning takes on a whole new significance in data centers.

A small undetected equipment malfunction could lead to expensive downtime and damage the operator’s reputation. In turn, correct commissioning prevents revenue and credibility costing downtime as well as makes the data center provider’s job easier and more cost-effective in the years to come.

The commissioning team led by Cx Manager Juuso Saari is currently hard at work testing and making sure the most powerful supercomputer in Europe, LUMI (Large Unified Modern Infrastructure), has the optimal facilities to run. Operated by CSC, the supercomputer is situated in Kajaani, northeastern Finland, in a former paper mill turned data center.

“Commissioning is about quality assurance. We make sure every crucial technical system – be it ventilation, cooling systems, heat pumps, generators, electrical distribution systems, building automation – works the way it was designed and that all the systems work seamlessly together under any circumstances”, says Granlund’s Juuso Saari.

5 rules for a successful Cx

Early start

The commissioning process starts early in the design stage of the data center. “We make a very detailed commissioning plan and quality check it together with the data center provider. Mapping out the schedule and communicating to all parties what is expected of them before and during commissioning are also essential in the early stages of commissioning”, says Juuso Saari.

Holistic view

The commissioning team plays a huge role so selecting the Cx service provider is an important task. Besides vast technical knowledge and experience in data centers, the team needs to have a holistic view on the mechanisms and stakeholders of a data center.  Coordinating the process with the data center provider, contractors and system suppliers requires excellent communication and organizing skills.

Testing, testing

One of the key phases in commissioning is identifying and testing possible failure modes and scenarios. Through meticulous testing the potential problems are detected and solved early on. “When problems are found in the testing phase, they are a lot faster and cheaper to resolve than later on”, describes Otto Linna, the Cx team’s Mechanical Engineer and HVAC specialist. “Small problems can turn into big and costly problems if they are left undetected”.

Enough time

Good commissioning from planning, executing commissioning programs, conducting factory acceptance tests, testing on site, verifying results to documenting and reporting takes some time, but it is an investment that pays for itself. Furthermore, during the commissioning process, the data center operators get to know the systems and how they work. This makes it easier to run the data center in the future. Systematic documentation and reporting ensure that relevant data is accurate and accessible during and after the commissioning phase.

Constant communication

The commissioning calls for close co-operation among commissioning team, data center provider, contractors, and systems suppliers. Information needs to move quickly and accurately between stakeholders. ”Commissioning is also a great opportunity to share expertise and combine different points of view. We are constantly learning from each other”, mentions Otto Linna.

Get to know LUMI supercomputer

Located in the data center of CSC-IT Center for Science Ltd in Kajaani, the LUMI supercomputer has the computing power of 1.5 million state-of-the-art laptops. LUMI is owned by the European High-Performance Computing Joint Undertaking (EuroHPC JU). The organisation responsible for operating the supercomputer is the LUMI consortium. The consortium countries include Finland, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Iceland and Switzerland.

Read more about LUMI and its waste heat recovery system 

Get to know how LUMI data center was designed 

Want to hear more?

Jari Innanen

Business Director, Data centers
Granlund Oy

Telia boosts data centre capacity as artificial intelligence increases data centre capacity needs

20.05.2024 – Search engines and other online services are increasingly making use of artificial intelligence. The proliferation of AI services increases the…

Telia Helsinki Data Center (Image: Telia)

Telia boosts data center capacity as artificial intelligence increases data center capacity needs

03.05.2024 – Search engines and other online services are increasingly making use of artificial intelligence. This increases the need for data center…


Meet us at the Energimässan and Tech Show in Stockholm

17.04.2024 – At Energimässan we will be presenting our expertise in energy efficiency, electrical design, and our software Granlund Manager. At Tech…


Ken Dooley has been appointed Chief Data Officer at Granlund

25.03.2024 – After working for a few years in a growth company, Ken Dooley returns to Granlund with the mission of bringing…

Timo Palonkoski, Granlund

Timo Palonkoski appointed as Business Development Director at Granlund

19.03.2024 – Business growth and development professional Timo Palonkoski has been appointed as Business Development Director at Granlund.

Davor Stjelja, Priyanka Thapa, Anna Korolyuk ja Nhung Nguyen

Employees are actively involved in developing Granlund’s diversity efforts

15.02.2024 – Granlund’s international employees are a valuable resource in developing the diversity of the work community and expanding expertise. Four Granlund…

Pekka Metsi, Granlund

Granlund achieved a good result in a challenging market situation

13.02.2024 – Even with the challenging market situation in the real estate and construction sector, Granlund made a good result in 2023.…


Veikko Martiskainen to develop Granlund’s international business

10.01.2024 – Granlund’s International Business Development Director will work with customers and partners in construction and property development.


Meet us at BIM World MUNICH 2023

17.11.2023 – Granlund attends the BIM World MUNICH at Finnish pavilion.