Mission Critical Power: What’s The Future For Data Centre Power?

Our General Manager Leo Craig explores the future of data centre power in the era of edge and 5G.

Data Centre World 2019 was another exceptionally busy event for us. But our Leo Craig managed to find time in his packed schedule to chat exclusively to Mission Critical Power’s Louise Frampton.

Tying into the show’s theme of the next generation of data centres, the interview explored how the industry will power server rooms in years to come.

According to Leo, the increasing influence of big data and forthcoming rollout of 5G mean we’re likely to see a shift in processing. Edge computing is going to have a bigger role to play.

“I believe we are going to see a reversal of what has happened in the past.

“Businesses previously moved away from on-premise data centres to the Cloud, but parts of the Cloud will now migrate down to the edge of the premise.”

– Leo Craig, Riello UPS General Manager

Of course, this trend has knock-on effects for uninterruptible power supply design. Leo explains that modular UPS are the obvious choice for edge installations. But he predicts the power density of such systems will need to increase, because space is at a premium.

IMPACT OF EDGE: We’re fast becoming a data-dependent society, with huge implications for data centres

The discussion also touched on energy storage. Diesel generators are falling out of favour, mainly due to their emissions. Leo claims that lithium-ion batteries might be an alternative, providing the prices remain at their relatively favourable level.

Such advances in battery technology enable data centre operators to tap into demand side response. This helps balance the electricity grid through schemes such as frequency response.

Leo concludes that Government intervention might be required to encourage operators to see the light.

“While there is a lot talk and interest around demand-side response, getting data centres to actually make the final decision to go ahead is still a challenge.

“Data centres have had the ability to do this, for the past ten years. Yet few are actively involved. They say they want to do it, but tomorrow never comes.”

– Leo Craig, Riello UPS General Manager

Read Leo’s full interview about the future of data centre power

It also features on page 47 of the April edition of Mission Critical Power magazine here