Improving Server Farm Efficiency


Improving Server Farm Efficiency

The Intepro Solution
Figure 12

Background Information

Modern data centers & server farms consume approximately 1.3% of electricity worldwide and that consumption is poised to rise due to the increasing need for information and data transmission.1 Since incoming power is AC while the server farms operate on DC, the power needs to be converted. Additionally, the voltage needs to step down to the input voltage of each server computer (Figure 1).

This causes waste heat to be generated.3 Additionally, the servers themselves also generate heat, requiring cooling systems that encompasses the entire server farm which themselves require energy to operate. The result is a higher operation cost.

To become more cost efficient, server farms are utilizing centralized AC/DC inverters as well as PDUs that distribute the power to individual servers. NTT Facilities in Tokyo has reduced their power consumption by 15% with this configuration.1 However, some may use their server farms as a laboratory, relying on DC Power Sources to test server equipment/prototypes with a variety of voltage and amperage needs. Intepro Systems recognizes this need and can provide our Delta SM15k to accomplish that.


The Intepro Solution

Our Delta SM15K is a Programmable DC Power Supply with auto-ranging capability. As a result, it can provide lower voltage and higher current simultaneously (and vice-versa) while providing its maximum power rating (Figure 2). For this reason, one only needs a minimal quantity of power sources to provide the diverse electrical needs of a variety of server units, especially in a laboratory setting.

Also, the Delta SM15K contains a USB-B port and standard ethernet. This allows users to control the power sources remotely.

Additionally, Intepro Systems can build custom PDU designs, allowing one to distribute the input power into multiple server units. Here is an example of our builds (Figure 3).

Figure 2
Figure 3

PSI Series


With the increasing need of data transmission worldwide, the demand for larger server farms will only grow. This will result in higher energy consumption for the powering and cooling of server farms. The desire to reduce operational costs will promote the need for cost efficient and reliable solutions; the Delta SM15K can help achieve just that.


1 MIT Technology Review - Edison’s Revenge: The Rise of DC Power by Peter Fairley

2 Rethinking Server Power Architecture in a Post Silicon World: Getting from 48 Vin – 1 Vout Directly by David Reusch, Ph. D

3 Data Center Knowledge – 380V DC Power: Shaping the Future of Data Center Energy Efficien cy by James Stark, P.E.


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