Photo via Fortune Data Centers
Fortune Data Centers is commencing operations in a new greener facility in San Jose, California. The facility emphasizes a better way to cool down hot servers, giving the center a Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) rating of 1.37 - pretty close to rivaling that of Microsoft and Google who are duking it out for best efficiency ratings. As a reminder, PUE is determined by dividing the total facility power by the IT equipment power—the lower the resulting ratio, the more efficient the data center. So for instance, Google brags on their rating of 1.21, and Microsoft has achieved 1.22. Fortune has something to be proud of, though.
During independent testing through a Level 5 Commissioning Process, [Fortune's] data center achieved a PUE of 1.37 at full load, an energy-efficiency level far superior to the industry average data center PUE of 2.0, and better than the EPA’s 2011 target PUE of 1.45 for state-of-the-art enterprise-class data centers.
Part of the reason for this is the way they chose to cool the servers - a really big deal in data center efficiency. Usually, cold air is forced up to the IT equipment through a raised floor, meaning the use of energy intensive fans. Fortune, on the other hand, does the opposite and optimizes the density of cold air and buoyancy of hot air to cut down on power requirements. Their trick is that they supply cold air from an overhead plenum with insulated ducts for hot air return. They also use ambient cooling for extra efficiency.
Fortune is so proud of what it's done with its facility that LEED Gold is in the picture. The company has applied for certification, and if they get it, they just might be the first operational data center in California to get LEED Gold.
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