New Approach To Co-Location Adds £millions To The Bottom Line

Data Centre Colocation racks cooled by evaporative cooling

Co-location data centres are under increasing pressure to cut prices whilst increasing resilience, power density and power availability. A new approach can make space for 20 per cent more revenue earning racks and cut the power bill by £ 1million a year.

A new technique pioneered by EcoCooling and described by Amazon's James Hamilton as "using the building as an air-handler" when combined with the company's patented CREC (computer room evaporative cooling) units, has been demonstrated to free-up space for an additional 200 revenue-generating racks in a typical 1000 rack large data centre whilst cutting the energy requirement for cooling from over 1,700kW to a mere 160kW.

"With increasing demand for co-location rack space many operators have run out of space. The EcoCooling CREC cooling system can create an additional 20 per cent of rack capacity compared with either perimeter CRACs or in-row cooling because is installed external to the white space", explained EcoCooling md and technical director Alan Beresford.

Data Centre colocation racks

As each co-location rack can generate potential revenue in excess of £1000 per month, this extra capacity has real significance. 200 extra racks in a 1000 rack data centre could generate over £2 million in additional annual revenue. At the same time, cutting the cooling energy bill by over 10,000,000 kWh could mean in the region of £1 million cost saving per year. "And that's on top of significantly lower capital costs of EcoCoolers compared to standard refrigeration equipment," said Beresford.

These are not merely theoretical calculations either. Beresford explained, "with over 150 data centres now using the EcoCooling CREC evaporative cooling system, the figures above are based on real installations.

"At one such site, the combination of evaporative cooling and the 'building as an air-handler' design technique meant that the rack complement on each of that data centre's four floors is increased from 150 to 180 with the EcoCooling strategy. Over four floors that will add an extra 120 revenue earning racks when the build out is complete."

A realist Engineer, Beresford points out "Evaporative cooling, such as used by our own EcoCoolers is a relatively young technology and is not suitable to every data centre in every country." He pointed out that, however, evaporative cooling has now come of age and can be used by a great many data centres throughout the temperate regions of the world.

"Considering the potentially massive increases in revenue and reductions in operating costs possible, data centre operators would be short-sighted not to include evaporative cooling in their due diligence at the planning stage." Beresford said.

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