HP has introduced what it claims is the world’s most efficient data centre. It’s not a purpose-built facility, but a modular design that HP claims will save up to 75% of the cost of a traditional data centre and up to 95% of the ongoing energy costs.
HP POD 240a, also known as the EcoPOD, has a PUE from as low as 1.05 to 1.3, compared with the 2.4 rating that HP says is typical for a bricks and mortar facility. It’s HP’s first air-cooled modular data centre that automatically adjusts to the most efficient cooling method: free air from outside, DX (direct expansion) and DX assist (a combination of outside air and DX).
The data centre can be deployed in 12 weeks and ships directly to a customer complete with fully tested IT. By comparison the company maintains that it can take up to two years for a brick-built facility to be up and running. Fast installation is helped by the integration of power distribution and cooling systems - all users need to do is hook up the power and network.
The trend towards modular data centres is growing, and you can see why. It’s hard trying to predict capacity needs for any length of time, which you need to do for a large purpose-built facility. That’s particularly true if you end up with lots of empty space for years, that’s costing money now. A modular data centre can start small and scale up.
It’s also hard to design a data centre so that it can take advantage of new technology, cooling systems and power management capabilities in the future. A modular data centre potentially offers the most energy efficient technology and you only pay for what you need. But it does all depend on the cost.