Using economizers to cool your data center can enable you to achieve tremendous energy efficiencies while using prefabricated data center modules enables you to deploy a new facility in a hurry.
Schneider Electric used both strategies to meet two of the requirements for a recent data center we built for a customer in the aviation industry. The company needed to build a new, Tier III data center with a target Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) rating of less than 1.2. The idea was to build the data center on land the firm already owned in the United Kingdom and to consolidate existing IT locations from several colocation sites into the new facility. In order to meet stringent business requirements and lease agreements, it had to be done quickly – in time to transition to the new data center during the 2013 August Bank Holiday weekend in the UK.
A prefabricated modular data center enabled the company to fulfill all of its targets, including a very stringent timeline. In fact, although the August holiday weekend fell just two months after the modules were delivered to the site, the data center was on schedule and fully operational, ensuring the company’s critical IT operations did not miss a beat.
The new data center is equipped to house 120 IT racks and a total power load of 400kW. All of the equipment is cooled by an innovative indirect evaporative free cooling solution that takes advantage of the refreshing English air to provide natural “free” cooling. In fact, given the prevailing climate, it’s expected the data center will operate on free cooling mode for about 90% of the year.
When fully populated, the data center is expected to achieve a PUE of 1.1 – a bit better than the company’s overall ambition. Combined with other energy efficiency measures, such as efficient lighting and automatic presence controls, the data center achieved a BREEAM rating of Very Good. (BREEAM is an energy efficiency rating system used in Europe, similar to LEED in the U.S.)
The data center design also needed to allow for expansion in order to accommodate an additional 100kW of IT load. The modular design again proved to be the ideal solution, enabling the business to rapidly step up capacity from 80 IT racks to 120 as dictated by demand. Ultimately the company realized reduced initial capital and expenses and ongoing operating expense savings because it was essentially rightsizing and not overpaying for capacity it did not currently need.
Companies around the globe are realizing similar benefits from Schneider Electric’s modular, prefabricated data center solutions. If there’s a data center project in your future, whether it be newly constructed or reconfigured, you would be wise to take a look at how our modular technology can help you meet your business goals.