The City of Palo Alto has written a $495,970 rebate check to Hewlett-Packard (HP) for designing and constructing a new data center that is cooled mostly with fresh air. It is estimated HP will save nearly 5 million kWh per year by using this system, rather than a conventional one using electricity. (There is a backup system using electricity for hot days, but it uses more efficient technology.)
The almost 5 million kWh was said to be equivalent to the power needs of 640 homes per year. Cooper Preuit Engineers Inc., Enovity Inc., and staff from Hewlett-Packard collaborated on the new cool system design.
Some of the other energy-saving efforts made by HP are:
- installing clear vinyl curtains from the ceiling to contain heat exiting from server racks;
- oversizing air intakes and relief louvers to bring in outside air to cool;
- without using supplemental fans, increasing chiller efficiency by using models with variable speed drives.
The very large rebate check HP received for the fresh-air cooling system is not HP’s only rebate from the City of Palo Alto. There previously had been others totaling $700,000.
HP has been focused on energy efficiency for some time. It has estimated that by 2015 there will be about ten million servers needed for the world’s computing needs. In 2011, it was predicted that the number of servers managing the world’s data will grow by ten times.
Energy efficiency measures at other data centers the company supports have cut an estimated 13 million kWh or 7,200 tons of CO2 emissions, according to HP.
Image Credit: CPAU Credit City of Palo Alto
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