HP says the largest implementation yet of its Dynamic Smart Cooling technology has generated huge energy savings that other firms could emulate by improving the efficiency of their datacentres' cooling operations.
It is deploying its thermal imaging in a 70,000 square-foot unit in Bangalore and so far achieved a 20% reduction in cooling power consumption. Once HP’s technology is fully optimised in the centre, the aim is to save 7,500 megawatt-hours annually, enough to power 750 homes and cut CO2 emissions by 7,500 tonnes.
Implementing Dynamic Smart Cooling involves the installation of heat sensors within a datacentre, enabling imaging that shows the hottest parts of a facility and how efficiently or otherwise air conditioning units are working. When the sensor system began shipping earlier this month, HP said it could save companies up to 45% savings in their cooling energy costs.
In the Bangalore datacentre, 7,500 Dynamic Smart Cooling sensors are deployed on the unit's server racks, enabling the system to react to thermal mapping by adjusting individual cooling units.
Chandrakant Patel, fellow at HP’s enterprise systems and software laboratory, said the deployment illustrated that it was important to “get rid of sustainability anecdotes” in green discussions and “implement real analytics” on datacentre cooling, where measurable energy savings could be made.
“There is a lot of talk about efficient servers and it is a very important part of being green,” he said. “But people forget cooling and it can make a huge difference to their energy consumption.
"Cooling also prevents overheating of individual servers and therefore avoids downtime,” he added.
Air conditioning units use roughly a single watt of power for every watt being consumed by servers, said Patel. This, he said, meant cooling efficiency was equally as important as server effiiency.
In the US, approximately $10bn (£4.9bn) was spent on datacentre cooling in 2005. Over 85% of companies around the world put double the energy they needed into air conditioning owing to the lack of efficiency of those systems, HP said.