Green data centers.

  • Researchers achieve PUE value of 1.23 in DataCenter 2020 test center.
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Energy efficiency is the most important instrument to effectively improve the CO2 footprint of data centers. Telekom takes an integrated, comprehensive approach to increasing the efficiency of its data centers—from cooling and energy supply to optimized utilization of hardware capacities.


Video: DataCenter 2020
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DataCenter 2020.

We have been operating the DataCenter 2020 test data center together with Intel since September 2009.

DataCenter 2020 is based on the open source principle. The results of our joint efforts will be published and can then be used by all interested parties. We conducted some 200 events with around 10 participants each during the reporting period where we presented and discussed ways to optimize energy consumption at data centers.

In an initial project phase, which was conducted from 2008 to 2010, researchers reduced energy consumption using relatively simple solutions. They optimized the airflow by sealing leaks in the raised floor and insulating the cold air areas (cold aisle containment) to prevent the mixture of cold and warm air. As a result, the fan speed of the circulating air coolers could be reduced to 30 percent, and energy consumption of the fans was down to 10 percent. The researchers increased the temperature in the system and the difference between intake and outlet temperatures. They also raised the water intake temperature of the cooling unit. These measures make the cooling unit considerably more energy-efficient and reduce its operation times.

Reliable operation requires an uninterrupted power supply. The studies showed that this is needed less than previously expected thanks to the separation of cold and warm air. Measurements from 2011 show that the energy density, or electric power per module or rack, can be increased three times over from 5.5 kW to up to 17.5 kW. Computer availability and reliability remained as high as before despite the power increase. The researchers achieved a PUE (power usage effectiveness) value of 1.23 as a result of the optimization measures.

We initiated additional tests in 2012. Test results show that higher energy densities of over 20 kW per rack are manageable as well. We are also looking into the use of hot aisle containment. IT load control and the energy density this requires is another option to optimize data center operations as a whole which is currently explored by researchers.

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T-Systems is operating the DataCenter 2020 jointly with Intel at Euro-Industriepark in Munich. At DataCenter 2020, we are testing solutions that enable more energy and cost-efficient data center operation to benefit the environment and the climate. The two partners work on developing pioneering business models and new, cost-efficient ICT solutions for users and customers.

One of the project partners' milestones is to achieve a PUE (power usage effectiveness) value of 1.3.
The PUE value is the most important indicator of data center energy efficiency. It compares the entire amount of energy used for data center operation with the amount of energy consumed by the computers. The average PUE value at T-Systems International and PASM data centers is 1.75. That means that 1.75 kW of power needs to be supplied to the data center for every kilowatt of power the servers need. Telekom's goal is to decrease this value for new fixed network data centers to 1.4 and for existing data centers to 1.6 by 2020. We have already achieved a PUE value of 1.23 at DataCenter 2020.

Experts found a number of surprisingly simple solutions when looking for optimal energy efficiency in data center set-up and operation. For example, the PUE value can be significantly improved by strictly separating hot and cold air. Additionally, experts found that it was not necessary to cool the room temperature down to 22°C, as is common. Temperatures of up to 27°C do not have a negative effect on computing performance. However, the right location, the type of energy supply and the distance to the customers who order computing capacities are important factors. T-Systems plans to take these results into account when building or restructuring data centers.

Data Center Optimization project.

We launched the Data Center Optimization project in collaboration with PASM in August 2011 to optimize the infrastructure of our data centers in Germany. The project is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2012. The first step will be to analyze planned reductions. In a second step we will check whether the project can be technically implemented at three pilot sites.

The Data Center Optimization project includes around 16 measures per data center to reduce energy costs and will be conducted at 15 data centers.

Consolidating data centers at T-HT Hrvatski Telekom.

In 2011 T-HT Hrvatski Telekom migrated all applications and data to new, standardized data centers within the scope of the Data Center Consolidation project. Processes used at the former T-Mobile data centers in Zagreb were introduced at T-HT Hrvatski Telekom's new data center, which went into operation in 2001, and two older sites were closed.

The Croatian subsidiary also built a new next generation data center based on the technology concepts of dynamic data centers and cloud computing. In addition, the company consolidated the server infrastructure, which is based on the UNIX and x86 operating systems, and the local area and storage area networks (LAN/SAN).

Thanks to the new, flexible infrastructure, T-HT Hrvatski Telekom can distribute resources dynamically and reduce energy consumption by allocating resources to designated subsystems, such as Oracle, for example. The company was also able to migrate applications and data and consolidate all of the systems onto shared platforms without limiting system operation.

Update on the 2010/2011 CR program.
Sub-targets Status of implementation/measures
Improve climate management in buildings and data centers   Implementation underway.
  • Group Facility Management: Climate Change Group to determine specific new reduction targets for the real estate sector
  • PASM: 3,000 installations for air conditioning with new control software with potential savings of 27 GWh per year (2009 to 2014)
TEMPO task force project   Implementation underway.
  • Analysis and optimization of operating temperatures for ICT systems
  • Data recording over a 12-month period is almost complete. The data will then be evaluated.
  • General implementation of the ETS 300 climate model is going according to plan.
Standardization of low power mode (L2 mode)  

Implementation underway.

  • As a member of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), Telekom was instrumental in developing the new standard in 2011.
 

2010/2011 CR program

The current 2011/2012 CR program can be found in the "Strategy & management" section.

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