Critical Environments

Mission critical refers to any factor of a system (components, equipment, personnel, process, procedure, software, etc.) that is essential to business operation or to an organization. Failure or disruption of mission critical factors will result in serious impact on business operations or upon an organization. Therefore, it is extremely critical to the organization’s “mission”.
With respect to commercial businesses, mission critical most often refers to data center infrastructure; the core physical or hardware-based resources and components that comprise a data center including;
  • Automatic Transfer Switches (ATS)
  • Generators
  • Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS)
  • Battery Banks
  • Power Distribution Units (PDU)
  • Computer Room Air Conditioning Units (CRAC)
  • Fire Suppression Systems

Critical Environments Overview.Battery Bank Critical Environments Overview.ATS Cabinet

Critical Environments Overview.UPS Cabinet Critical Environments Overview.Generator
The Uptime Institute maintains a Tier Rating standard for critical infrastructure. The Tier Standards establish a consistent set of performance criteria. Summarized in the table below. As with any other system, preventive maintenance is a crucial activity in support of critical infrastructure. Scheduling and execution of critical environment maintenance (CEM) typically involves coordination with multiple groups (change control process), substantial planning, detailed procedural documentation, and defined alternatives should any issues be encountered during maintenance execution.
Like other preventive maintenance activities, critical infrastructure assets are kept in a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS). The CMMS is the primary repository for an asset’s location, installation dates, warranty period, life expectancy and maintenance history. This information along with critical environment maintenance events are used to plan the facilities maintenance workload requirements, maintenance expense budgets, capital planning for asset replacement at end-of-life, and general maintenance activity reporting.