Nowadays, the deployment of armed forces is more complex and varied than only a few years ago. The demands made on equipment are steadily increasing, and IT infrastructure also remains an important issue. Data security, encryption, and interception protection present challenges not only to persons responsible, but also with regard to delivering equipment to operational areas and combat zones.
State-of-the-art equipment, such as servers for radio and telecommunications technology, as well as control, monitoring and reconnaissance systems are transported to military bases across the globe for on-site usage. For the entire duration of deployment, these systems must be protected against inclement weather effects conditions which can cause dust, sand and humidity to ruin IT equipment, but also protect against vibration and shocks during transit.
The ideal transport solution to protect IT equipment is a portable 19-inch rack case, preconfigured at the home base. Specialists are able to combine and configure all systems as one unit, enabling them to connect only a few cables at the location of deployment with plug-and-play system, thus allowing units in combat and operational zones to deploy IT equipment as quickly as possible.
However, these cases must meet high standards. They must contain a durable 19-inch interior rack mount for electronics, possess a certain lid height for storing connectors and cables, and provide customizable options for any application.
In transit, the case must prevent shock and vibration from affecting the sensitive equipment and to ensure effective protection against external forces caused by inclement weather conditions such as rain and dust.
At the place of deployment, easy handling, for instance thanks to (permanent) casters or stackable cases, is crucial to create and maintain a functioning infrastructure.
"We are aware of all of these requirements and have been focusing on cargo cases for 40 years. It is often the small details that matter," notes Pavel Levshin, Product Marketing Manager EMEA. "Many devices have varying degrees of sensitivity to external influences, which may require, for instance, installing so-called shock mounts."
Peli-Hardigg is a manufacturer of 19-inch rack cases made of High Impact Polyethylene with built-in rack mounts for storing all types of electronics. Shock-mounts are bumpers/shock absorbers made of elastic plastic or other materials that buffers the electronic devices from the outer frame of the case. Peli Hardigg Rackmount Cases are rotational moulded and can be customized and manufactured based on the customer’s needs, or selected from one of the three immediately available product ranges. With a total of 8 product ranges for varying requirements and the option of customization, the manufacturer provides a wide range of 19-inch cases.
Levshin further comments: "The total height of the devices, the depth (length) of the devices, the weight to be loaded, as well as the so-called G fragility rating of the system components are important factors for the initial selection of the ideal rack case."
The G fragility rating indicates how well a an electronic device is protected against shock on its own. The unit of measurement is 1G. A fragility rating of 10 G would indicate that in case of impact, a device would be damaged at ten times the rate of acceleration of the earth's gravitational pull. For sensitive electronics, especially those intended for installation in switch and server cabinets, protection is not usually very high. For comparison’s sake, a computer tower has a G-fragility of 25G and raw chicken egg breaks at a force of 10-15 G.
Therefore, mobile 19-inch rack cases are designed for varying sensitivity classes and customized for actual requirements by selecting the ideal rack mounts.
"Thanks to a wide range of additional options, Peli-Hardigg is able to meet nearly all customer requirements by accomodating from 3 to 27 rack units." This includes removable or permanent casters, 19-inch pull-out rack mounts and drawers, as well as pockets in the lid for storing cables, documents and casters during use. The choice of the exterior colour is also customisable and is another factor to take into account because for instance, it can impact the interior temperature of the case. Even simple details, such as the option of being able to attach the lid on the side during use, or small casters in the lids for easy handling make it possible to find the perfect solution for any user," concludes Levshin.
The height unit (HU) or rack unit (RU /U) is the unit that determines the height of devices built into the 19-inch design. One rack unit corresponds to a device height of 1.75 inches or 44.45 millimetres.
The demands of armed forces and government agencies will continue to evolve in years to come and require increasingly complex and simultaneously flexible tasks. Decentralized solutions with mobile command centres and local networks can only be provided and developed with a mobile IT infrastructure. The challenges of shipping and delivering equipment to remote areas should not be underestimated in this context and considered during the planning stage of the entire IT infrastructure.
You can find more information on the topic on the manufacturer website www.peli.com