In the last article of his five-part series on data center energy efficiency on Datacenter Knowledge (we already mentioned it on our blog) Julius Neudorfer provides an overview of high level factors that will impact the efficiency of your data center. These factors are:
- Site location, which in these days is often influenced by the cost of power.
- Facility occupancy and power loading rate
- The impacts of oversizing capacity on efficiency
- Proper and continuous maintenance
- Power density
- And, last but not least, modular design.
Neudorfer says “One method to mitigate the potential of over or under-sized data centers is modular design. Capacity planning and modular capacity designs can help mitigate the risk of capacity or functional obsolescence. In some designs, the total space and utility capacity is designed and built upfront, but only individual sections are fully outfitted with the UPS, generators and cooling equipment. This saves both upfront capital cost and recurring maintenance expenses. Moreover, it also help improve energy efficiency at each stage, since the smaller sections are more fully occupied and operate at a higher efficiency. This modular design still allows for planned expansion, without the energy efficiency penalty of under-utilization.”
At this point we need to add something: Modularity is often misunderstood as a synonym for containerized data centers only. But true modularity is more: it is being able to build a data center piece by piece. To achieve this one needs the ability to add UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) capacity in modules. Then a data center is able to expand the IT a company uses as and when it needs to by adding additional capacity.
For further insights on this we recommend our blog archive about modularity and modular UPS.