Making data centres more energy efficient with Monitoring & Targeting
06/04/2016« Back

Modern life relies on data centres but their energy consumption has become a significant issue. The European data centre consumption was 50 terawatt hours (TWh) in 2008.

This will rise to 100TWh by 2020, roughly the same as the electricity consumption of Portugal. To meet energy security and environmental goals, many operators and governments are trying to develop metrics of how efficiently these data centres use energy.

*However almost half of EU companies don’t have a system to measure the environmental impact of their data centres.

That’s according to a survey by The Green Grid, which added 45% out of 150 firms admitted they don’t have energy efficiency goals in place for the design and operation of their data centres.

Only 29% of respondents said they have a system to measure their environmental impact while 67% of those surveyed answered they don’t have it in place.

* source - Data Centres Lack Energy Efficient Measures - Energy Live News Jan 14th 2016

Achieving greater energy efficiency is the single most important way to manage down these costs, and it will also help reduce your carbon emissions and improve your sustainability performance. Ever-increasing data storage and processing needs mean that the energy needed to run the computers and to deal with the heat they generate is constantly increasing. Day-to-day running costs for data centres are rising rapidly as higher fuel prices impact on energy-intensive power and cooling.

Due to the combined pressures of rising IT energy use, rising energy costs and rising impact of environmental considerations all operators should develop a program of energy measurement for their facilities. This should, at the very minimum be independent metering of the utility power to the facility.

How can you make your data centre run more efficiently?

Monitoring and measurement

It is recommended that facility operators have a power survey carried out or install energy monitoring and reporting equipment to record the energy use within the data centre. The data recorded should include the utility feed power utilisation, the IT electrical load and the major M&E infrastructure components at the level of granularity the facility electrical design allows.

Levels of measurement can be carried out at a number of frequencies

Dependent upon the accuracy and granularity of measurement the operator requires;

1.  Once, typically for a one off survey, though this is of limited value as a snapshot measurement

2.  Hourly for one week, again typically a one off survey, this provides a more effective view of how the data centre responds to varying IT loads

3.  Hourly for one week every three months, possibly a recurring survey delivered by an M&E maintenance partner, this provides snapshots of how the data centre responds to IT loads, climate and changes to equipment and processes

4.  Continuous, this is a permanently installed monitoring and reporting system providing a very effective view of the impacts of changes in IT load, equipment, operating process, infrastructure and climate.

Design and Implement a Monitoring and Reporting Strategy

Metering the energy use and temperatures of various areas and of equipment is essential for efficient maintenance and planning further change. Readings can be manual or automated and regular reports can be generated.

Energy Benchmarking and Continuous Monitoring

Energy benchmarking can be effective in helping to determine the efficiency of your current data centre and to identify better-performing designs and strategies. As new strategies are implemented, energy benchmarking will enable comparisons of performance. The benefits of measuring, monitoring, and taking steps to optimize your energy efficiency also will enable you to extend the life and capacity of your existing data centre infrastructure, as well as avoid millions of metric tons of carbon emissions that would result from expansion.

Our expertise in energy management and infrastructure development can help cut your power consumption and improve your power usage effectiveness.

E-mail us using the box below for a trial or demonstration Or call - 0845 003 9087

Contact us

Tel: 0845 003 9087
Fax: 0808 208 3726
info@digitalenergy.org.uk

Manchester Science Park
Lloyd Street North
Manchester
M15 6SE

Coventry Canal Basin
Coventry
West Midlands
CV1 4LY

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