by January 1, 2009 0 comments

Currently, the world produces more transistors than rice grains. Data created
(excluding the data accessed and downloaded) on the Internet every month equals
3 million times the number of all the books available in the world. The energy
cost of ‘maintaining’ a person in second life is more than that of a real human
being, taking into consideration the communication bandwidth needed, the
constant ‘operating costs’ in terms of processing power required to keep a PC
running, the electricity, power back up, and other expenses. Such being the
magnitude of energy requirement and concern in today’s world, serious steps need
to be taken and go on to device a detailed roadmap for operations that reduce
power consumption for better business productivity.

The first ever APC by Schneider Electric’s Asia Pacific Press Day held in
Singapore recently sent out strong messages on the basis of those startling
facts. The message was loud and clear — to formulate, at a macro level, a
strategy out of a realization that new-age processing devices, servers and
architectures like virtualization though are making data processing and
retrieval simpler, the price an enterprise — small or big — pays in terms of
energy and related costs in terms of cooling, electricity, heat etc, is
phenomenally high. The network, at the end of all these optimizations will end
up functioning better, the servers will become more efficient, more space will
be saved, but the resultant business savings will still be minimal if, for
instance, the UPS that was used to charge the old setup is not optimized to
cater to the new enhanced technology architecture. APC’s event emphasized how a
data center manager can constantly ‘visualize’ the load and usage of his storage
hardware using personalized tools created by APC. Aaron Davis, CMO, Schneider
Electric Worldwide stressed on the four Ms of energy management — Measure,
Manage, Model and Monetize, from the point of view of ROIs and effective
decision making towards long-term profits.

PCQuest got exclusive access to the state-of-the-art model data center
solutions by APC, including a real-time live demonstration of the ‘hot air
containment’ technology which traps the hot air released out of the servers in a
corridor, by making the servers face their backs to each other, creating a ‘hot
aisle’ and concentrating the ‘hot spots’ of the data center in this single
aisle. Since the temperature of the aisle is high, it becomes easier to convert
this into cool air and unlike traditional cooling mechanisms the cool air is
disseminated equally across the sides of the servers. Depending on server usage,
the cool air is dynamically ‘allocated’ to the location, keeping the average
temperature constant, but reducing unnecessary energy utilization arising from
cooling equipment. An added advantage here is that cooling units can be placed
between server racks as and when the data center undergoes a scale-up. Also, in
comparison to traditional data center rooms, the temperature here is pleasant,
allowing better accessibility by the data center manager.

Products like these, in addition to its infrastructure suites that come for
various sizes, UPS systems, and energy optimization analysis, are strongly
targeted also at the mid size enterprises and first time data centers that
require to focus on the business and prevent power budget leakages. In turn,
there is heavy focus on India and most of these products will, in the weeks to
come, see localization and hopefully, increased adoption.

Vishnu Anand was hosted by APC at Singapore for the APAC Press day.

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