Jacob-und-Wilhelm-Grimm-Zentrum, Berlin | Germany

Project data

Customer: Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Architect: Max Dudler, Berlin

Net costs, building services €: 20,660,000.00

Project period: 2005 until 2014

Services: planning and monitoring (phases 2-9), sanitary engineering, sprinkler technology, heating, ventilation and air conditioning, electrical engineering, communications, lift technology, measuring and control technology, building control, dynamic and flow simulation, data networks, active and passive components for 5.8 Mio. €


State-of-the-art information and data technology

In a project completed in spring 2009, Humboldt-Universität (Humboldt University) in Berlin has built a new central library and media centre, the Jacob-und-Wilhelm-Grimm-Zentrum (Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm Centre), designed by the architectural bureau Max Dudler.

The new library, an eleven-story structure with 37,000 m2 of gross floor space, now houses a total of some 2.5 million books and 500 servers, as well as a range of rare-book and special collections. Not surprisingly, the Grimm Centre has also quickly become a key multimedia hub of the Humboldt University.

The data centre for the new facility has been installed on the ninth floor, on a total of 340 m2 of floor space. It is equipped with state-of-the-art network, data-security, storage and data-backup systems, as well as with server systems able to serve 32,000 students and 800 staff persons.



ZWP carries out overall planning of technical building services

ZWP was commissioned to carry out all planning of technical building services and media and computer systems. The challenge: the data centre's energy requirements total 440 kW of electric power and nearly 400 kW of cooling energy (the heat generated within densely packed cabinets can reach levels of up to 12 kW), or up to nine kilowatts per square meter.

The IT systems are housed in a total of 61 cabinets (19-inch). Cabinets with especially high heat loads have direct cooling units employing water cooling. Power for servers is supplied via two circuits, i.e. the system is redundant for added fail-safety. In the case of a power failure, a 625 kVA dynamic uninterruptable power supply (UPS) system supplies power to the backup circuit until a 1150 kVA diesel-powered emergency generator starts up.

The server cabinets have a special design that makes it possible to control systems individually and shut them on/off following defined delay periods. The overall system also features real-time monitoring of power quality, temperature and other data.

Optimal use of room space

Overall, the concept for the building features optimal use of room space. Visitors encounter virtually no barriers as they move between a) the bustling foyer area, with its exhibition space, auditorium and cafeteria, b) the information areas and c) the library's open-access shelves. The building's centre and key orientational focus consists of a generous, inviting atrium, with reading terraces, that recalls the grandeur of great reading rooms of earlier eras. The entire open-access-shelves area is conditioned by an air-driven concrete core activation system.

Images: © Stefan Müller

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