HP Unveils EcoPOD Data Center with 95% Efficiency

Image via HP

While all the attention was on Apple's iCloud this week, HP quietly slipped out some news that is not so insignificant. The company revealed EcoPOD, short for "Performance Optimized Data Center," a modular data center that claims a Power Usage Efficiency (PUE) of 1.05. That kind of efficiency is rather miraculous, as a PUE of 1 represents perfect efficiency and the industry average for data center efficiency sits at around 2. While some competitors like Google and Microsoft have gotten some of their data centers to as low as 1.14 or so, a rating of 1.05 is simply extraordinary. GreenBiz tipped us off about the new modular data center, noting that the PUE ranges from 1.05 to 1.3 depending on the IT load.

HP states it is the world's most efficient data center:

Unlike traditional brick and mortar data centers, the HP POD 240a packs ten times the IT capacity into a compact, modular, ultra efficient package.

* Lightning fast deployment - up to 88% faster
* A quarter of the cost - up to 75% savings
* Near perfect energy efficiency - up to 95% less energy

"Up to," being the key words here. The EcoPODs are 10,000sf modules that can be installed and plugged in in just weeks, and can hold over 4,400 servers. We're pretty sure that if an IT company is packing 4,400 servers in a module, the PUE is most likely not going to be 1.05. But it may still be quite low, depending on the location. Cooling the servers is where the bulk of the energy consumption goes, and HP states it is using hot-cold aisle cooling technology and that the modules are capable of using outside-air cooling to reduce energy consumption as much as possible. In locations where plenty of cold outside air is available, that 1.05 rating is more probable.

While the EcoPOD will save IT companies money with the quick plug-in time, easy expandability, and energy savings, the modules won't be exactly cheap. According to GreenBiz, the starting price tag is $8 million. Still, for all the benefits, this may be a relatively inexpensive investment.

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Tags: Computing | Energy Efficiency | Technology

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