Driven by rising electricity costs, green legislation and corporate social responsibility, green IT is increasingly on many IT professionals’ minds, particularly for the power-hungry data centre. Whatever the reasons, experts say that in the long run, having an energy-efficient data centre helps the environment and also saves businesses money.
Technologies that can help data-centre become green:
Data centre infrastructure management:
Experts rate data centre infrastructure management (Dcim) tools as one of the coolest technologies that can help companies make their infrastructure energy-efficient and green. Until 2009, Dcim had virtually no market penetration, but today it is one of the most significant areas of green computing. Dcim brings together standalone functions such as data centre design, asset discovery, systems management functions, capacity planning and energy management to provide a holistic view of the data centre, ranging from the rack or cabinet level to the cooling infrastructure and energy utilisation. it helps encourage the efficient use of energy, optimise equipment layouts, support virtualisation and consolidation, and improve data centre availability.
Free air cooling
Data centre power use is high on the agenda for most data centre developers. Energy costs have become the largest single element in the data centre’s total cost of ownership (tco) – ranging from 20% to 60% depending on the facility’s business model and as energy prices (and/or taxes) rise, the share of the total cost will only become larger. Free or natural air cooling is the practice of using outside air to cool data-centre facilities rather than running power-hungry mechanical refrigeration or air-conditioning units.
Data centre operators are looking for more efficient alternatives to the current x86 standard server racks and blades to make their infrastructure sustainable in the long term. On-site wind generation or use of renewable energy.A number of large businesses, including Apple, Facebook and Google, are taking initiatives to power their data centres using wind energy.
Data centre consolidation and virtualisation
Virtualisation and data centre consolidation strategies help enterprises streamline it resources and utilise the untapped processing power of high-power server and storage devices. The combination of virtualisation, low-latency and high-bandwidth network connectivity and specialised servers has the potential to slash data centre capital costs and improve energy efficiency.
Cloud computing can help enterprises in their green it efforts, since a computing cloud offers higher CPU utilisation.
Energy-efficient cooling in the data centre
Many data centres are being run against old-style environmental designs, where the approach to cooling is based around ensuring that input cooling air is at such a low temperature that outlet air does not exceed a set temperature in many cases, the aim has been to keep the average volumetric temperature in the data centre around 20°c or lower with some running at between 15°c and 17°c.
The other technologies that can help data centre become green are:
Optimising airflow for maximum coolingIncreasing a data centre’s thermal envelope