Data Centre Review: Cutting Data Centre Energy Consumption

With Microsoft sinking server rooms into the sea to cut cooling costs, we share some less extreme ways of cutting data centre energy consumption.

The Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI) reports data centres already account for 3% of the world’s electricity. In addition, they also generate 2% of global carbon emissions. That’s the same as the environmentally-unfriendly aviation industry.

Data Centre Review Magazine logoUnsurprisingly, moves that can reduce the amount of energy data centres waste are welcome. Even if they’re somewhat outside of the box.

Through its ‘Project Natick’, computing giant Microsoft has sunk a shipping container-sized data centre into the ocean, just off the Orkneys in Scotland.

Although improving internet connections to coastal communities is said to be the main reason, the initiative offers another advantage.

Energy-intensive air conditioning is one of a data centre’s main running costs. But the naturally cool environment deep underwater will help keep Microsoft’s facility cool too. Not only will this cut energy consumption, it could even lengthen the data centre’s lifespan.

How To Improve Data Centre Efficiency

Of course, such an innovative solution isn’t feasible for all operators. They must look for other ways of cutting data centre energy consumption.

Our General Manager Leo Craig shares his top tips for reducing energy waste with Data Centre Review. We won’t spoil your enjoyment of the full article, but the handy hints are far-reaching.

They start with how to use a containment system to improve the efficiency of computer room air conditioning (CRAC). Also covered is virtualising servers and storage, along with turning off idle IT equipment.

One of the main energy-saving areas is upgrading critical power protection systems to efficient modular UPS units. Modern uninterruptible power supply technology has moved on in recent years. This means modular systems deliver significant improvements in performance while at the same time offering enhanced energy efficiency and reduced footprint.

Read more tips on cutting data centre energy consumption here