Friday, August 01, 2014
Cheyenne''s newest data center demonstrates a greener approach
Data centers consume an enormous amount of energy every year. The U.S. government's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy reports that a data center uses up to 15 times more energy than standard corporate office buildings. Reducing energy consumption in data centers is important not just for reducing costs but also for minimizing the impacts of big data on the planet. A new data center, located in Cheyenne, Wyoming, may be paving the way for future data center designs.
Green data takes root
Green House Data, a firm that specializes in sustainable cloud hosting, opened its newest data center in Cheyenne on July 30. The 35,000-square-foot data center has already assigned a quarter of its capacity, according to the Wyoming Business Report.
The green data center, which was built through a multi-million dollar grant courtesy of the Wyoming Business Council, is located right next to Green House Data's local facility. The grant was awarded to the firm in an effort to encourage green development in Wyoming and in recognition of Green House Data's strides in sustainable data center management.
A model of efficiency
Green House Data has designed and developed green data strategies since 2007, says the company website. Their data centers boast an average Power Usage Efficiency rating of 1.25, well above the target 1.00 ratio, according to the company's homepage. Several strategies are employed to minimize energy waste at the data center.
Location is a huge factor when planning a data center. Green House Data has taken advantage of the chilly climate in spots like Wyoming to provide free ambient cooling. This strategy greatly reduces the need to operate rack-cooling equipment year round. Other organizations, such as Microsoft and U.S. National Center for Atmospheric Research, have taken advantage of Wyoming's weather for their data center projects, reports Data Center Knowledge. Green House Data also cuts down energy use through the organization of their hardware. Hot/cold aisle containment ensures that air cooling the system does not meet hot air leaving the system. The interaction of hot and cold air forces cooling systems to work harder and consume more energy. Likewise, shifting toward virtualization has reduced the total hardware necessary to operate a data center. Fewer machines facilitates a more efficient distribution of electricity.
Companies looking to reduce energy costs or structure a greener business should take note of Green House Data's success. The right application of of energy-saving practices and hardware upgrades, such as console servers that allow administrators to work remotely and reduce their carbon footprint,can have help new data centers go green.
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