We’re helping to take over 10,000 cars off our roads each year with energy-efficient data centres

 In MetroBlog

Here’s a little-known fact: in-house data centres are mostly inefficient, energy-hungry beasts. If you have one, there’s a good chance your energy bill is much higher than it needs to be. Not only that, your carbon footprint may not bear thinking about.

A US study by Upsite Technologies pinpointed one of the main reasons for this: the average computer room has nearly four-times the running cooling capacity (technically known as Cooling Capacity Factor, or CCF) of its actual heat load. And that’s just the average. In one case, CCF was 30-times the required level.

And cooling is one of the biggest energy components of a data centre so working with an energy efficient provider who can significantly reduce cooling offers a major advantage.

Even big data centres weren’t immune. The average CCF of the five largest sites was 2.4; better than 4, but still highly wasteful.

But why would companies overcool their data centres? After all, no business deliberately wastes money.

The answer is that cooling is a complex science that involves overall room design, floor design, air intakes, airflow (not just in the room as a whole, but within rows, underneath cabinets, and more), equipment configuration, and more. On top of that, high-density servers require more and more kW, creating a major energy headache. But Metronode can accommodate up to 30kW in one rack without the need for re-working or configuring in our data centres.

Being able to support high-performance computing in the data centre, using high-density innovation, has become the next battleground for colocation providers. Given the business-critical nature of data, most businesses think it’s better to overdo cooling – which doesn’t damage equipment – than underdo it, which does.

Metronode places huge importance on energy efficiency, the technology we deploy in our advanced data centres, working with Bladeroom, is testament to this. Earlier this year, we became the first company of our kind to achieve a NABERS 4.5 star energy-efficiency rating. The rating was for our Silverwater and Derrimut facility, and we’re on track to achieve it for our Illawarra facilities in the near future.

Besides demonstrating a commitment to sustainable business practices, a high NABERS rating also means cost savings. For example, working with the NSW Government, we have engineered one of the most energy efficient data centres in Australia. The NSW Government has been able to consolidate 130 data centres into two energy efficient Metronode data centre facilities which could cut carbon emissions by up to 646,000 tonnes over 15 years – that saving is equivalent, in terms of emissions, to taking 18,400 cars off the road every day!

With energy costs on the rise and a growing focus on companies’ carbon footprints, the case for choosing a provider with leading energy-efficiency performance should be high on the decision making agenda.

Check out the video below to hear from Metronode’s Head of Engineering, Michael Kalny about how we maintain our sustainable, energy efficient facilities.

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