Creating a Data Center Design for Energy Efficiency


When creating a data center design with “Green Connect” in mind, it is highly important to know the way of your approach towards the data center. The approach must be from the perspective of rightsizing the physical infrastructure of your data center.

Keeping the energy efficiency in mind and utilizing the right kind of efficient devices will lead you in building a proper data center design for energy efficiency. Following these data center tips will aid you in making the right decisions and plans for your data center.

Energy Efficiency:

There are several issues that can affect your data center efficiency. Some of them are:

  • Power distribution component running below its full load capacities;
  • Usually, the AC systems are forced to ingest extra energy to run air at high pressures over long regions;
  • Due to N+1 or 2N redundant designs, most of the components are not utilized at their full capacities;
  • Often oversized UPSs are used to avoid operating near capacity limits;
  • Normally, the efficiency of UPS systems is decreased, when they are run at low loads;
  • Due to the underfloor blockages, the cooling devices are forced to work harder which leads to inefficiency.

Configuration of Servers:

Just getting the servers up and live in the data center is not enough, you must ensure that the power saving features are enabled on the web servers. Most of the times, for high availability, IT managers don’t enable the power saving features. Enabling the power saving features will aid in cost saving by reducing energy ingestion and cooling costs.

Layout of Data Center Floor:

The data centers floor layout is one of the important factors that impacts the efficiency of an air conditioning system. Usually, if the airflow is blocked, it won’t be much efficient. If a hot-aisle/cool aisle layout doesn’t fit, likely the data center will lose efficiency. Keep in your mind that when you design a data center, ensure you separate the hot air and cold air systems. Also, be aware of where the air cooling systems overlap in the data center. This should be the ideal location for the equipments that are either very hot or very important.

Floor Ventilation Tiles:

Ventilated tiles are not just to look cool, basically, they are designed to serve airflow. In most of the data centers, floor ventilation tiles are placed incorrectly or either they are insufficient or excessive in numbers. If you do an analysis of airflow patterns in your data center using the CFD (computational fluid dynamics), you will see that there is much more you can optimize in your data center. Most importantly, you can optimize the cool-airflow of your data center. This way you can install the ventilation tiles in the best locations.

There are many examples, where placing the proper amount of vented tiles in the right locations have reduced the cooling costs of data centers by 25%. Also, some vendors in market can help you with using the CFD for proper placement of tiles.

A data center design consists a lot of equipments that are essential for the ensuring continuity of the data center services. For example, a small thing like locating the vented floor tiles properly can help you in big cost-savings. However, the best way you can optimize a data center is by utilizing exactly what you need.

Rightsizing the data center infrastructure plays a significant role in the energy ingestion. Whether you have a data center or not, the power and cooling system expenses will always be there. Small organization that doesn’t have huge IT loads, won’t see any impact by their IT department. However, the power and cooling expenses will rise, when the II loads gets larger. The best way to rightsize the data center is via server consolidation and virtualization.

One more thing to keep in mind when creating a data center design is the fact that as your customer base will grow, so your data center. So, design your data center keeping the future expansion in mind.

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