Welcome!

News Feed Item

Why Data Center Efficiency in the 2000s is like Paper Recycling in 1970s

On the first Earth Day on April 22, 1970, the World Wide Web existed only in research labs, “texting” was something you wrote in a notebook and the closest thing to a data center was the public library. On that day, millions of people gathered at events around the country to learn, share and work toward innovative solutions to protect our natural resources. In advance of Earth Day, Jeff Schnitzer, general manager, GE’s Critical Power business (NYSE: GE), discussed recent trends in data center energy efficiency.

“In 1970, we worried about landfills and paper waste, some 44,310,000 tons of it annually1. Today, those things that were on paper now are in digital format, with an estimated 639,800 gigabytes of that digital information2 passing through data centers every minute. Forty-four years later, Earth Day 2014 reminds us to examine the impact data centers have on our natural resources and sustainability and the strides being made by businesses and governments to meet new data center energy efficiency levels,” said Schnitzer.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, data centers account for up to 2.5 percent of the total electricity generated in the United States. Schnitzer added, “There are a number of technology innovations that contribute to the overall energy efficiency of data centers.” Some examples include:

  • Capturing Free Cooling: About 30 percent of all data center energy is used to cool servers and information technology equipment with power-hungry air conditioning chiller units, which are used at both the server rack and printed circuit board levels. Many companies today are investing in “free cooling” technology to draw in exterior ambient temperatures to keep data center systems cool and to reduce energy. In 2013, Facebook unveiled a new data center in Sweden that uses free cooling technology that harnesses the average exterior temperature of 34 degrees Fahrenheit3.
  • A Few Percent Matters: According to Frost & Sullivan, raising energy efficiency levels of uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems in data centers from 90 to 98 percent can save the United States $3 billion annually in energy costs. CoreSpace, a GE customer in Dallas, is saving an estimated $25,000 a year with its eBoost*-equipped, multi-mode UPS systems operating at 99 percent efficiency.
  • Overnight Ice: To lower the temperature at its 538,000 square foot data center in Phoenix, i/o Data Centers engineered a set of cooling tanks filled with a mix of ice balls and glycol that are chilled during the night when electricity is less expensive and used to cool data center equipment during the day4.
  • Modular Power: With data center capacity expected to expand by 33 percent over each of the next five years5, squeezing more capacity and efficiency from existing data facilities is vital to sustain growth. Containerized, or modular, data center and power protection units—such as GE’s PowerMod* technology—connected to existing facilities lets companies scale the capacity and energy use they need. These outside units use ambient air to reduce excess heating and energy consumption.
  • Mining Energy: To save energy costs, Iron Mountain built its data center in a former limestone mine in Pennsylvania. It keeps the data operation cool by letting the subterranean walls absorb as much 1.5 British thermal units of energy per square foot4.
  • Powering the World’s Cell Towers: Powering the world’s 640,000 off-grid cell towers with diesel generators burns more than 11 billion liters of diesel a year. Hybridizing a cell tower using GE’s innovative sodium nickel chloride Durathon* batteries cuts fuel consumption at sites by up to 50 percent and can enable more towers worldwide to be powered by renewable sources such as solar. Cutting fuel consumption by up to 50 percent delivers significant cost savings for the industry and reduces greenhouse gas emissions from each off-grid cell tower.

“As we create, share and use more and more data in our business and personal lives, data center energy efficiency will remain one of the great challenges facing the industry,” continued Schnitzer. “The innovations we’re deploying today not only provide real and immediate benefits, they are leading the way to new solutions for tomorrow.”

GE’s Critical Power business provides mission-critical applications with end-to-end power product and service solutions that maximize uptime and power efficiency. The solutions add to GE’s broader Industrial Solutions portfolio of leading technologies designed for the delivery, management and optimization of electrical power for customers across multiple industries. To learn more about GE’s Critical Power business visit: www.gecriticalpower.com.

About GE

GE (NYSE: GE) works on things that matter. The best people and the best technologies taking on the toughest challenges. Finding solutions in energy, health and home, transportation and finance. Building, powering, moving and curing the world. Not just imagining. Doing. GE works. For more information, visit the company's website at www.ge.com.

Follow GE’s Critical Power business on Twitter @GEcriticalpower.

The figures cited in this release unless otherwise noted, are based on industry-standard information or data collected by GE in the deployment of critical power systems. The results cited are not a guarantee of performance or specific results, and individual results may vary based on specifications and operating conditions.

*Trademark of the General Electric Company; may be registered in one or more countries.

1 Earth 911 - United States Waste in Numbers then and Now 
2 Intel - What Happens in an Internet Minute? 
3 BusinessWeek - Inside the Arctic Circle, Where Your Facebook Data Lives 
4 CIO – 7 Innovative Data Center Designs 
5 IHS - Containerized Data Centers - World - 2012

More Stories By Business Wire

Copyright © 2009 Business Wire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Business Wire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Business Wire. Business Wire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Linux Academy, the foremost online Linux and cloud training platform and community, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Linux Academy was founded on the belief that providing high-quality, in-depth training should be available at an affordable price. Industry leaders in quality training, provided services, and student certification passes, its goal is to c...
WebRTC defines no default signaling protocol, causing fragmentation between WebRTC silos. SIP and XMPP provide possibilities, but come with considerable complexity and are not designed for use in a web environment. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Matthew Hodgson, technical co-founder of the Matrix.org, discussed how Matrix is a new non-profit Open Source Project that defines both a new HTTP-based standard for VoIP & IM signaling and provides reference implementations.
After more than five years of DevOps, definitions are evolving, boundaries are expanding, ‘unicorns’ are no longer rare, enterprises are on board, and pundits are moving on. Can we now look at an evolution of DevOps? Should we? Is the foundation of DevOps ‘done’, or is there still too much left to do? What is mature, and what is still missing? What does the next 5 years of DevOps look like? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by DevOps Summit Conference Chair Andi Mann, panelists l...
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership abi...
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, director/senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, will discuss the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
The Internet of Things is clearly many things: data collection and analytics, wearables, Smart Grids and Smart Cities, the Industrial Internet, and more. Cool platforms like Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Intel's Galileo and Edison, and a diverse world of sensors are making the IoT a great toy box for developers in all these areas. In this Power Panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists discussed what things are the most important, which will have the most profound e...
910Telecom exhibited at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which took place at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, in November 2016. Housed in the classic Denver Gas & Electric Building, 910 15th St., 910Telecom is a carrier-neutral telecom hotel located in the heart of Denver. Adjacent to CenturyLink, AT&T, and Denver Main, 910Telecom offers connectivity to all major carriers, Internet service providers, Internet backbones and exchanges.
We all know that data growth is exploding and storage budgets are shrinking. Instead of showing you charts on about how much data there is, in his General Session at 17th Cloud Expo, Scott Cleland, Senior Director of Product Marketing at HGST, showed how to capture all of your data in one place. After you have your data under control, you can then analyze it in one place, saving time and resources.
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
Whether you like it or not, DevOps is on track for a remarkable alliance with security. The SEC didn’t approve the merger. And your boss hasn’t heard anything about it. Yet, this unruly triumvirate will soon dominate and deliver DevSecOps faster, cheaper, better, and on an unprecedented scale. In his session at DevOps Summit, Frank Bunger, VP of Customer Success at ScriptRock, discussed how this cathartic moment will propel the DevOps movement from such stuff as dreams are made on to a practic...
"A lot of times people will come to us and have a very diverse set of requirements or very customized need and we'll help them to implement it in a fashion that you can't just buy off of the shelf," explained Nick Rose, CTO of Enzu, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
A look across the tech landscape at the disruptive technologies that are increasing in prominence and speculate as to which will be most impactful for communications – namely, AI and Cloud Computing. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Curtis Peterson, VP of Operations at RingCentral, will highlight the current challenges of these transformative technologies and share strategies for preparing your organization for these changes. This “view from the top” will outline the latest trends and developm...
Who are you? How do you introduce yourself? Do you use a name, or do you greet a friend by the last four digits of his social security number? Assuming you don’t, why are we content to associate our identity with 10 random digits assigned by our phone company? Identity is an issue that affects everyone, but as individuals we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ben Klang, Founder & President of Mojo Lingo, discussed the impact of technology on identity. Sho...
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
China Unicom exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which took place at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, in November 2016. China United Network Communications Group Co. Ltd ("China Unicom") was officially established in 2009 on the basis of the merger of former China Netcom and former China Unicom. China Unicom mainly operates a full range of telecommunications services including mobile broadband (GSM, WCDMA, LTE FDD, TD-LTE), fixed-line broadband, ICT, data communica...