Capturing and analyzing energy efficiency-metrics in data centers can improve business management decisions in several areas, particularly as computing and storage requirements grow, coupled with rising electricity costs, according to a report from Info-Tech.
These include improving capacity planning for power and cooling infrastructure, avoiding costly brownouts and service interruptions, meeting corporate priorities for “green” initiatives, calculating the real total cost of ownership (TCO) of infrastructure components, providing a baseline for calculating return on investment (ROI) for new energy-saving initiatives, and identifying areas of opportunity based on energy usage data.
The report, “A Method for Measuring Data Center Energy Efficiency,” provides businesses with the most widely used methods of measuring energy used by data centers, aimed at helping IT managers better manage and reduce energy consumption.
The savings can be dramatic. As an example cited in the paper, the annual power and cooling cost of a 20 kW rack with an efficiency ratio of 1.6:1 would be $25,229; however, the same rack with an efficiency ratio of 2.6:1 would cost $40,997 (assuming $0.09/kW-hour).
The report lays out four recommendations to improve overall efficiency, IT productivity and server efficiency. These include investing in energy management products, working with facilities to gather non-server energy consumption data, using metrics to drive business cases, and phasing out older equipment.
The Green Grid launched several new tools and reports in October last year to help global businesses improve the energy efficiency of their data centers and operations, along with a host of service providers offering new products that help optimize data center efficiency.