By LINDLEY ESTES THE FREE LANCE-STAR
The launch of a new Internet exchange point and data center at the Quantico Corporate Center in North Stafford County has local officials excited about increased online capability for local businesses and the potential for new jobs in the technology sector.
Yyotta LLC, which built the exchange point, held a launch event Wednesday at the corporate center and announced partnerships to provide faster, more secure Internet to the region and Quantico Marine Corps Base.
“We’re thankful for data center… positively giddy,” said Stafford Supervisor Wendy Maurer, who was among the officials on hand for the event. “This is an opportunity for local businesses to connect faster…. It is huge leap forward in terms of economic development.”
Yyotta LLC was formed in 2013 in Stafford to respond to provide secure, fast internet to areas such as Quantico, where government, private business and education intersect, said spokesman Don Goodwin.
Yyotta Chief Executive Officer Gerry Fay said the opening has been three years in the making “but as of today we are real … we lit up the fiber.”
It’s named after a “yottabyte,” which is one septillion bytes. Fay said that represents a big number and a big problem facing the region as the economy becomes global and digitized.
With its infrastructure and partnerships, Yyotta provides a modular data center; fast, secure, reliable connectivity for moving large volumes of data; systems storage to power private clouds; and the opportunity for training in cyber-security fields.
The exchange point taps into the region’s dark fiber network, installed 18 months ago by SummitIG along Interstate 95.
Dark fiber is optical fiber, which is expressly available for local internet connections through providers. By tapping into that fiber, Yyotta creates the opportunity for those providers.
The first to partner with them is AOC Connect, which will expand the local fiber network and offer ethernet and other services to the area. AOC Senior Vice President Jeff Fowler said those services will expand onto Quantico, as well.
Yyotta is also partnering with RackTop Systems, which will offer cloud computing and storage services in Stafford.
RackTop CEO Eric Bednash called the launch “a truly exciting capability.”
And rounding out the initial partnership announcements is Chiron Cyber Security Training. With Yyotta, Chiron will create a Quantico Cyber Center of Excellence, where it will offer its educational tools to create a ready workforce of cyber security professionals in Stafford.
“The addition of Yyotta is a catalyst for Stafford County to develop as a premiere emerging location for data centers and cyber-security,” said Rick Cobert, business development administrator for the county. “Your business puts us one millisecond away from the heart of the internet—Ashburn.”