Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Recycling for Future Data Centers - DC Powering & Dell

Recycling for Future Data Centers - DC Powering & Dell

Rating: 4 / 5

More efficient and low-powered data centers are to set the future of an industry burdened by a past of little to no recycling and environment awareness. Led by a new technology referred to as DC powering, developed and tested by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and a market leading computer manufacturer Dell, the concept of a more environmental and financially friendly data center is taking form. How? - by optimizing rather than expanding.

In March 2008 Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory released their final report concerning DC Power for Data Center Efficiency. In the report the project was documented as successful in reducing power costs, increase/maintain data center efficiency and more consciously preserving power supplies. Thus indicating the potential future role of DC (direct current) powering as a greener and environment protective alternative to standard AC (alternating current) power solutions.

And though recommended by many environment organizations and agencies such as EPA (U.S Environmental Protection Agency) it is not the proper recycling of computers and electronics that are to make this industry more climate conscious. Why build a new data center when the limit is reached if the size actually can be optimized?

Computer manufacturer and IT giant Dell experienced this conundrum in 2006 when their two data centers in Austin Texas reached capacity limits. But instead of throwing out the old and expanding to a bigger data center, Dell chose a different approach. By optimizing existing instruments and technology in data storage and power supply Dell managed to reduce costs by more than $29 million on power and efficiency.

"When we optimised our own data centers, we learnt a lot of lessons," states Rick Becker, VP of Dell's Software and Solutions Enterprise Product Group, in an interview with TechWorld. "And now we want to share these lessons with our customers"

With the launch of "Green IT" data center solutions for their customers Dell is spreading the message of a more energy-efficient, high performing data center on its website. Promising to slash energy consumption with up to 45 % and increase data center performance with up 97 % Dell seems to have created their own definition of an environmental protective data center.

LBNL's DC powering technology and Dell's own data center recycle solution is perhaps to be considered two prime instances of an industry in change. Optimizing data center power systems indicates not only a reduction in energy-costs for companies like Dell but also candidates as a greener and more environmental friendly powering solution. A seemingly optimal two-in-one solution for the data center industry.

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