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Crash Course: Data Center Power

 
 

Data center power usage will be the No. 1 infrastructure concern facing IT executives over the next three years, according to a Robert Frances Group research report. Five years ago, the average power requirement per rack was 1 to 3 kilowatts. With requirements for processor cycles, memory and storage continuing to grow, along with the density of the equipment packed into each rack, it's now common for a typical rack to require 5 to 7 kilowatts, with high-density blade server implementations hogging 24 to 30 kilowatts per rack. Couple this dramatic increase in power consumption with the rising price of electricity and it's clear why this issue is becoming increasingly critical.


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We recently surveyed 228 Network Computing readers with infrastructure responsibilities and asked how likely it is that they'll enhance their data center's cooling and power capacity during the next year. Indeed, 37 percent of those surveyed said capacity increases will happen or are likely to happen, while another 25 percent said they are studying the issue.

To address this coming crisis in data center power requirements, you must redesign your data center or build a new one. A modular and flexible design will be the key to future-proofing your investment. And you can't afford to ignore efficiency concerns, since energy costs aren't going to decrease over the next 10 years.

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