The data center is the heart of every enterprise network, enabling the transmission, access, and storage of all information. Here, cabling connects local area networks (LANs) to switches, storage area networks, and other active equipment that supports all applications, transactions, and communications. These are complex locations of computer farms and server fans. There are many factors that impact the efficiency of a data center. These factors can range from geography to maintenance and many things in between.
Of course, selecting a site location that is physically secure and has reliable access to power, water, and communications is an essential consideration. The average and highest temperatures and humidity will directly impact the cooling systems’ energy efficiency. Of course, the costs of energy and the fuel source itself are also considerations. Energy costs are highly location-dependent and are based on local or purchased power generation costs.
One method to mitigate the potential of over and undersized data centers is a modular design. Capacity planning and modular capacity design can help minimize the risk of capacity or functional obsolescence. In some configurations, the total space and utility capacity is designed and built from the beginning. Still, only individual sections are fully outfitted with UPS, generators, and cooling equipment. This saves both upfront capital costs and recurring maintenance expenses.
Proper and Continuous Maintenance
Regardless of how well-designed and built it is, the equipment must be maintained for proper operation. In the past, this was driven mainly by the need to ensure reliability to avoid system failure. While this is still a key consideration, ensuring optimum energy efficiency is also part of a data center’s maintenance goals. This is particularly true for cooling systems, whose efficiency and effectiveness dramatically drop off if filters become clogged and cooling towers are not rigorously cleaned. Sorting out the details of a data center can, of course, be exhausting. With a few primary stepping stones, you can start thinking about what the needs for your data center are. We hope that showing you these factors that impact the efficiency of a data center gives you a vocabulary to start talking about your data center needs.