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APC Beefs Up Smart-UPS with Energy Management

APC by Schneider Electric claims the industry’s first uninterruptible power supply (UPS) software to provide energy reporting for IT equipment. APC’s PowerChute Business Edition 9.0, which provides safe system shutdown and UPS management, now enables customers to understand their power consumption by reporting on the energy being consumed, cost of the energy and CO2 emissions produced on a per Smart-UPS basis. 

The latest PowerChute Business Edition calculates the cost of a Smart-UPS’ power draw in kWh using the appropriate local currency, showing how the energy use of protected equipment impacts the bottom line.

The Smart-UPS  fifth generation new rack-mount models are planned for release in late Q4 in North America. These devices will include an intuitive LCD user interface, high-efficiency ‘green’ mode, a unique projected battery replacement date indicator and switched outlet groups.

By using new APC Smart-UPS with switched outlet groups and PowerChute Business Edition 9.0, users can configure the exact sequence that equipment shuts down and restarts so that more critical servers stay online longer. Turning off unessential servers outside business hours using the scheduled shutdown and reboot capability in the new software could cover the cost of purchasing an APC Smart-UPS product in about two years, says APC.

PowerChute Business Edition 9.0 ships with all APC Smart-UPS 5kVA and below and is also available for download at www.apc.com/tools/download/index.cfm. This version provides UPS monitoring and centralized risk assessment reporting for up to five Smart-UPS. APC also offers a version to monitor up to 25 Smart-UPS. 

Meanwhile, the EMerge Alliance, an open industry association focused on the adoption of safe direct-current (DC) power distribution standards for commercial buildings, has announced a new technical standard committee to focus on energy-efficient data centers.

The group also added 11 new members as part of its planned expansion to address reduced power consumption throughout the building.

New members include Cooper Industries, DTE Energy, Emerson Network Power, Spear Point Energy, TSM/LEDingEDGE, Verve Living Systems, Intel, Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), Enviro Energy Partners, FSP-Powerland Technology, and the Connected Vehicle Trade Association.

The EMerge Alliance is developing a 380-volt DC power standard for inclusion in its hybrid alternating current (AC) and DC microgrid platform.

As an example, Intel Labs is planning an installation that will showcase both 24- and 380-volt DC EMerge standards at its New Mexico Energy Systems Research Center, including photovoltaic (PV), a world-class PUE data center, energy storage, office lighting and electric vehicle (EV) charging.

In addition, research and evaluation of a 380-volt DC-powered modular data center is already underway at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), where researchers are monitoring the energy efficiency of information and communication technologies. UCSD is also home to one of the first EMerge 24-volt DC microgrid systems in the nation, which incorporates on-site solar panels. It was deployed at the school’s new Sustainability Resource Center in 2009.

In addition to energy savings, other potential benefits of DC power distribution in computing environments include improved power quality, reduced cooling needs, higher equipment densities, reduced heat-related failures, improved reliability and simplified, more efficient integration of on-site renewable energy generation, according to EMerge.

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