3U TELECOM GmbH increases the efficiency of the data centre
IT managers currently have several con- current areas of concern on their agenda but optimising data centre effi- ciency, maximising uptime and reducing operating costs remain top of the list. The challenge is therefore to find the optimal balance between these compet- ing priorities.
As a provider of colocation (accommodating a customer server in a data centre), virtualisation and other IT and telecommunications services, 3U DCS has a particular obligation to its clients to reach the aforementioned goals. In the IT hardware segment, 3U DCS has already achieved significant savings through virtualisation. Virtualisation is defined as the combining of multiple (heterogeneous) hardware resources into a homogeneous environment - an important green IT measure with positive environmental effects.
More generally, virtualisation reduces the energy consumption costs of a data centre, however, effectiveness is reliant on two factors: the IT infrastructure itself and climate control. When safeguarding the IT infrastructure with a UPS (uninterruptible power supply), the efficiency of the UPS, even under partial load conditions (see Fig. 1, on the following page), is hugely significant. 3U DCS uses BENNING ENERTRONIC modular UPS systems, with good reason, as the following case study demonstrates.
The 600-square-metre TIER II data centre offers a solid foundation for colocation and distributed data centre products through reliable electricity supply and climate control, with appropriate redundancies. Network connections to national and international carriers are also available.
Centrepiece of UPS system
UPS systems form a central and essential component of any data centre. They bridge the gap between a mains power failure and the diesel generator coming online. A power failure could cause immense damage without a UPS system in place, especially for the sensitive IT systems installed in data centres.
Following the takeover of a number of data centres by 3U DCS, the company is now undergoing a program of modernisation – taking place, in part, during ongoing operations. At the same time, the infrastructure is also being adapted to fall inline with current client requirements. The most important factors for 3U DCS’ clients are high availability, the best possible PUE (power usage effectiveness) factor and a higher power density per rack.
When it comes to ensuring availability, 3U DCS operates a multi-layered safety mechanism. Its data centres boast two power paths with both supported by modular UPS systems in an n + 1 redundant configuration.
To reduce the risk of downtime further, the systems are duplicated (distributed data centre). In a distributed data centre server storage hardware is located across multiple data centres.
No “single point of failure”
BENNING’s ENERTRONIC UPS utilises modular technology, meaning the electronic bypass is not only centrally installed in the UPS system, but is contained within each individual module.
This modular concept without a “single point of failure” permits the rapid replacement of a module in the event of a failure, meaning the MTTR (mean time to repair) is reduced and overall system availability is increased.
Reporting and monitoring concept
The management of distributed data centres is a core focus of 3U DCS activities. It must ensure that faults to the infrastructure components and IT systems are identified rapidly, before a failure can occur.
For this reason, 3U DCS uses BENNING’s ENERTRONIC modular UPS to transmit error messages as part of its intelligent approach to controlling IT loads.
The UPS system installed in the Hanover datacentre has a high level of efficiency, which hardly drops even during partial-load operation (see Fig. 1).
As a result, the PUE factor is optimised and the amount of power consumed can be reduced.
In addition, the modular structure of the system provides cost effective scalability. The advantage is that oversizing is avoided, reducing CapEx and OpEx. (see Fig. 2).
The reduction in operating costs is delivered through the UPS system being optimally sized for its current load requirements and means efficiency remains within an acceptable range, i.e. with a load of about 50 - 100% of output (see Fig. 1).
Proven in practice
Currently BENNING UPS systems are used in 3U DCS data centres in Hanover and Marburg, with several recent acquisitions also set to benefit from BENNING’s range of UPS products.