Last month, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency made its Energy Star rating system available to data centers. Today, the first data center was awarded Energy Star status. Storage Vendor NetApp announced that its data center in Research Triangle Park, NC scored a 99 out of 100 on the EPA’s data center efficiency scale, reports DatacenterDynamics.
The following features were implemented to earn the Energy Star rating for the RTP data center:
- 74 degreesF average supply air temperature: Using a higher temperature threshold on supply air (74 degreesF instead of 55 degrees to 60 degreesF) allows NetApp to dramatically reduce cooling costs.
- Airside economizer: The data center is cooled by using just outside air (free cooling) 67% of the time during the year.
- Pressure-controlled room: Modulating fans, based on NetApp’s proprietary technology, supply pressure-controlled rooms and regulate the volume of air to avoid oversupplying air and wasting energy.
- Cold aisle containment: The cold room separates the cold and hot air streams to protect supply air temperatures from being affected by hot air returning from the racks.
- Overhead air distribution: Instead of pumping cold air up through the floors (raised floors), overhead air distribution takes advantage of cold/hot air buoyancy and eliminates ductwork, reducing the energy needed for fans.