Select your location

Location: Rockville, Illinois

Segment: Healthcare

Industry: Higher education

Challenge: Establish a highly scalable and redundant centralised power system to support critical healthcare IT requirements and electronic health record storage

Solution: End-to-end Eaton power quality and distribution equipment, server enclosures with integrated heat containment and Intelligent PowerManager™ software

Results: Completely redundant power system capable of easy, high-density scalability to meet growing capacity needs, reliable back-up power to help maintain 24/7 uptime, unified power system monitoring and management

Eaton as a vendor provides us with the ability to take some of the things off the table that we used to worry about, but don't have to anymore. With a full B-side utility, generator and UPS room distributing to the B-busway in each room, TriRivers is supported with best-in-class redundancy and efficient power systems.

Roger Crook, TriRivers president


Located in North Central Illinois, TriRivers is a healthcare information technology (IT) organisation jointly sponsored by SwedishAmerican Health System in Rockford, Illinois and FHN (formerly Freeport Health Network) in Freeport, Illinois. 

The collaborative venture provides shared infrastructure and staffing, a regional fibre-optic network and collocation data centre services to support over 5,000 users across more than 50 locations in Illinois and Wisconsin. The shared data facility also provides organisations with reliable, centralised storage of electronic health records for enhanced patient security, convenience and productivity. 

TriRivers operates its information systems from multiple data centre locations, including a 33,000 square-foot hosting data centre in Rockford, and a back-up facility at FHN Memorial Hospital in Freeport, IL. 

A fibre-optic 300 plus mile network connects the data centres and healthcare facilities that are supported by TriLightNET TeleHealth Communications, which is wholly owned by TriRivers. 

This innovative network allows healthcare organisations such as SwedishAmerican and FHN to reduce costs greatly by sharing infrastructure and staffing for help desk, technical and operations support, technical services and data management functions.



The TriRivers system allows doctors to access critical healthcare applications as well as consult in real-time to UW Health for eICU and other services. This capability results in faster treatment for patients, with reduced waiting time for diagnoses and access to critical care specialists. To maintain dependable service for its customers, TriRivers first ensures the on-going health of its own critical equipment and applications. 

"We work around the clock for the entire year, relying on our computer systems as the backbone of our operations," explains Sheryl Johnson, VP and CIO of SwedishAmerican. "All of our medical records are vital to taking proper care of patients, which means that we can't afford to have downtime—even for maintenance.

"When it comes to managing power in critical healthcare IT environments, one anomaly or malfunctioning power device can bring down an entire network. 

Maintaining a clean, reliable supply of power across the network and receiving warnings and intervening before a potential problem can result in downtime are top priorities. 

Furthermore, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) sets the standard for protecting patient data. Any company that manages protected health information and electronic medical records must ensure that all required physical, network and process security measures are followed. 

To help immunise against these threats, achieve HIPAA compliance and ensure reliable patient care, TriRivers sought a premium back-up power system capable of safeguarding the more than 1,000 virtual mission-critical servers within its data centres. The organisation also wanted a solution that it could grow into, as well as one that would facilitate easy maintenance. 

"One of our major strengths is that we look at our clients' specific IT requirements before we develop a customised data storage solution," says Roger Crook, president at TriRivers. "To provide this service in a timely manner, it was important to develop a flexible and adaptable power system that would enable simple scalability without sacrificing performance."



TriRivers gained a highly scalable, centralised power protection and distribution solution by collaborating with Eaton data centre experts. Combining technical innovation with a rich feature set, the end-to-end Eaton power management solution delivers an impressive combination of power performance, electrical efficiency, simplified management, inherent flexibility and power density. 

As the heart of the power protection system, the double conversion design of the Eaton 9390 back-up power system provides TriRivers with the highest level of protection, safeguarding equipment against the most common power problems. 

In addition, with a high efficiency rating of 94 per cent and output power factor of 0.90, the unit lowers total ownership costs by reducing the cost of power to support protected loads. 

Even when operating at loads lower than 50 per cent, the 9390 provides an efficiency level that is higher than most traditional, fully loaded UPS systems. Eaton enables efficient use of power for maximum savings; due to its high efficiency rating, the 9390 produces less heat, which lowers facility cooling costs and optimises energy usage. 

The 9390 back-up power system provides internal expansion capacity to help TriRivers meet future needs economically. The unit also provides a fully redundant back-up power system to minimise the risk of unexpected outages and support HIPAA requirements for network uptime. With instant response to utility conditions, the UPS can quickly detect changes within incoming power feeds to ensure reliable power for always-on operations. 

New Eaton power distribution units and busway infrastructure at the TriRivers data centre complement the internal scalability of the 9390. The components combine to create a power distribution system capable of cost-effective expansion when business moves forward. Eaton's busway is custom-engineered and built to fit the specific layout requirements of TriRivers, with a compact design that occupies less space and can be installed faster than traditional cabling. "By simply snapping in new busway sections and plugging in power distribution units, we are able to bring new racks online in a matter of hours rather than a period of days," says Crook. "The expandable busway system also reduces cabling, which can prevent airflow circulation in the rack and lead to cooling losses." 

"It's easy to snap in new busway sections and plug into power distribution units," says Crook. "It takes only hours, not days, to install an additional row of busplug boxes, cabinets and ePDUs." 

The Eaton-managed ePDU power distribution units stemming from the busway ducts allow TriRivers to monitor and control critical factors such as voltage, current and power. This level of information enables the organisation to make the right decision when it comes to data centre energy consumption, and also helps prevent power loss proactively. As they are integrated with Eaton's management software, 

TriRivers is able to control these units from any computer on the network server—helping it achieve the power system availability needed for HIPAA compliance. TriRivers also employed Eaton environmental monitoring probes (EMP), which enable IT management to collect temperature and humidity readings in the rack environment. The collected data can be monitored in real time via the on-board screen or remotely using a Telnet connection or a standard Web browser. 

To unify monitoring and management of its power system, TriRivers relies on the Intelligent Power Manager software. The supervisory platform allows users to monitor and manage multiple power and environmental devices across the network from a single interface. The innovative software combines critical applications to ensure system uptime and data integrity with power monitoring and management. 

"The Intelligent Power Manager software paired with the managed power distribution units gives us in-depth system information down to the outlet level, so that we can closely monitor power status and rack conditions within the same pane of glass in our operations centre," says Crook. "With access to historic data down to the device level, the platform also allows us to proactively design and implement solutions for higher availability and efficiency." 

To complete the package, TriRivers outfitted its data centre with Eaton's Paramount™ enclosure system, a scalable platform compatible with virtually all major servers, switches and other networking equipment. It provides integrated heat containment and unparalleled levels of storage, cooling, power integration and cable management to meet nearly any client need. The racks also provide a secure locking system to heighten security in accordance with HIPAA. 

As part of the project, TriRivers also tapped Interstate PowerCare® to assist in the design of the new data centre model, including built-in expansion capacity.

Eaton solution:

  • 9390 UPS
  • 125 kVA power distribution unit
  • Managed ePDUs
  • Switchgear
  • Rack-based heat containment
  • Paramount enclosure system
  • Busway
  • Environmental monitoring probes (EMP)
  • B-line cable trays
  • Power XpertT monitoring software
  • Intelligent Power Manager software

With the Eaton solution, TriRivers can better help healthcare clients reduce costs through the centralisation of data and real-time energy management functions—without worrying about the safety or accessibility of data. With Eaton power management products, the company can now:

  • Ensure the highest level of reliability within its data centre to protect customer assets 
  • Remotely monitor its power system to maintain availability for HIPAA compliance
  • Identify energy-efficiency opportunities through real-time and historical power data
  • Easily and cost-effectively scale to meet future growth, with the ability to customise power management and protection specifically for client needs
  • Enhance heat containment at the rack level to reduce cooling costs and extend equipment life 
  • Utilise clean, reliable power from two power systems with architecture to scale-as-you-grow 



With Eaton's help, Zenium is on track to energise its London One data centre in early 2017 whilst providing customers with continuous uptime and high availability. The company can extend electrical savings to its customers through Eaton's highly efficient back-up power systems with inherent cooling capabilities, which contribute to an ultra-low PUE. 

"The relationship between Zenium and Eaton has developed over a number of years. During that time, a high level of trust and partnership has been established," says Venables. "This strong collaborative nature is due to Eaton's willingness to listen and respond to not only our needs, but also the needs of our customers. 

"Zenium is built on a proven tradition of customer satisfaction," he continues. "With Eaton's help, we've created a data centre environment that can truly address each and every one of our customers' unique requirements whilst pushing the boundaries of energy efficiency and reliability. It sounds like a simple task, but it isn't typically accomplished with as much grace as we've managed with Eaton." 

By using Eaton's containerised power distribution units, Zenium preserved valuable data centre floor space whilst accelerating its project timeline through factory testing and simplified assembly upon delivery. 

And Zenium can quickly and easily expand its power protection system with inherent scalability while maintaining the health of each back-up power system with assistance from Eaton service technicians. 

Through a global business footprint and products compliant with global industry standards, Eaton's data centre engineers and professionals are accessible and networked around the world to share local experience and responsive support, improving uptime and reducing costs.