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Small data centre, large energy savings

data-centerA non-profit eco-organisation for children has created a data centre that is exceptionally small while also hugely energy efficient.

Working with Dell, Nortel, Pillar and VMware, Earth Rangers developed a data centre that’s only 9.3 square meters in size — about 10 times smaller than it might have been using a more conventional approach. The facility also reduces energy consumption by about 111,000 kilowatt-hours per year, the equivalent of cutting carbon dioxide emissions by more than 26 metric tonnes.

In addition, the daily computing energy required — about 100 kilowatt-hours — will be offset by a 28-kilowatt photovoltaic array.

“The data centre is an extremely impressive achievement,” says Aaron Hay, a research consultant at Info-Tech Research Group. “It is clear Earth Rangers took the time to plan holistically, rather than attack the server room piecemeal. I hope businesses who tour the site will rip a page right from this playbook.”

In the future, the organisation also plans to use heat from the data centre’s cooling equipment to provide hot water and heat throughout the building.

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