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Lavenya Dilip

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Which is the right Energy efficiency tool for your Data Center?

The market is flooded with energy efficient products and services that claim to optimize data centers and save on power. Data center power consumption has become out of control the past few years and companies have been clamoring to offer solutions for addressing not only the problem of green house gas emissions but also to make business sense by saving up some green.

 

Some of these tools are free such as American Power Consumption APC’s Efficiency Quotient online tool (http://www.apc.com/tools/calculator/efficiencyQuotient/) which helps IT managers determine the efficiency levels of their data center. It provides a fact-based rating of a data center’s current efficiency levels; recommends steps for improvement; gives access to related white papers, tools and information. More recently it has released another tool that will help managers make decisions regarding the physical requirements of a data centre after a virtualisation project. The Virtualisation Energy Cost Calculator can be downloaded from the APC site.

 

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has also developed a data center efficiency tool, DC Pro that analyzes 12 months’ worth of a data center’s utility bills to answer specific questions about electricity distribution, airflow management and data center cooling. The tool provides suggestions for improving efficiency.

 

The Green Grid,  a global consortium of IT professionals dedicated to improve energy efficiency in data centers, has launched several new tools and reports to promote the cause of data center efficiency including a new power usage effectiveness (PUE) reporting tool and regional tools for calculating free cooling. It’s free online tool for data center managers records their power usage effectiveness (PUE) scores that will establish global consistency in reporting the split between energy flowing to IT equipment and facility operations.In addition to free cooling from outside air, the tool provides information about savings that could be obtained using water-side economizers.

 

Software firm CA  has introduced a program called ecoMeter in its new ecoSoftware products, which helps companies manage energy use from data centers, as well as other facilities. The program allows a company to know, at any given time, how much energy is being used by each element in the data center – be it a server, generator, cooling unit or backup power supply, reports Earth2Tech . Another new tool launched by Arch Rock Inc., called Energy Optimizer – Data Center Edition is a wireless monitoring system that allows IT managers to make knowledgeable decisions about their data center efficiency in real-time. It  judges a system’s efficiency against standards from the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers, estimating the actual dollars the data center is spending on electricity and its carbon footprint. It also identifies hot spots, such as short-cycling, missing blanking panels and sub-floor obstructions that cause energy waste. Others approach the problem from a completely different angle. For example, Milford, N.H.-based Degree Controls Inc., has developed active airflow management products that include airflow monitoring tools to control cooling. Then there is a new chip by Teridian Semiconductor  that does accurate energy measurement as a way of addressing this growing enterprise data center power consumption. Teridian’s chip enables manufacturers to integrate smart energy measurement tools into data center equipment including power supplies, and communications equipment, as well as servers.

 

We have barely scratched the surface in this blog of the zillions of options available with respect to freebies and other efficiency tools for sale. Free tools can be handy to give you a broad perspective of where you need to be looking at to solve the issue. A professional consultation service like Green Rack Systems would help you sort through the plethora of choices in the market today to identify the right suite of products to invest in tha meet your data center’s unique challenges.

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Lavenya Dilip was responsible for Marketing at Green Rack Systems.