Follow Us

We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message

Intel tells data centre managers to turn up the heat

IT managers can save money and reduce their carbon footprint by increasing the temperature in the data centre

Article comments

Intel is advising its customers to increase the temperature in their data centres, claiming that companies can save four percent in energy costs for every 1ºC they turn up the heat.

Most data centres in Europe currently run at a temperature of between 19 and 21 degrees centigrade, in order to avoid creating hot spots that might cause equipment to malfunction. The cooling equipment required to maintain that temperature costs around $27 billion a year to run and consumes 1.5 percent of total world power, according to Intel.

Many companies worldwide are now looking at raising the temperature of their data centres up to 27ºC (80.6ºF), in a move that could help them save costs and reduce their carbon footprint. Facebook, for example, has saved $229,000 a year in energy bills by reprogramming its cooling to run at 81ºF, while Microsoft has saved $250,000 a year by increasing the temperature by just 2-4ºC.

“If we can raise the temperature in the data centre we don't have to use so much cooling, so we don't have to build so many power stations,” said Richard George, director of cloud services at Intel, in an interview with Techworld. “If we do that we may be saving $2.4 billion dollars in power per annum. That's a huge saving if we look at it across the world.”

However, Mark Peters, an analyst at Massachusetts-based Enterprise Strategy Group, told Bloomberg that moving to higher operating temperatures would require a commitment from other component suppliers, not just Intel.

“Perhaps the likes of Intel have designed their chips to run at hotter temperatures without an increased risk of failure, but historical components haven’t done so yet,” Peters said.

George said that raising the temperature is just part of the story when it comes to creating an energy-efficient data centre. He cited Yahoo's Computing Coop in Lockport, New York, which has an estimated power usage effectiveness (PUE) rating of 1.1, as a sign of things to come. The data centre operates with no chillers, and will require water for only a handful of days each year.

“We need to look at things like the power consumption, not just of the CPU itself, but of all the other components that we're putting into the data centre; and as we make those more efficient we're going to take a lot of heat and a lot of power consumption out of the data centre,” he said.

Intel itself is doing a lot of work on efficient buildings, and currently has one of the most efficient buildings in the world in Israel. The company uses the excess heat from the data centre to heat the showers, and condensation from the air conditioning units is used to water the plants.

Last year, Intel also announced it was adding new sensors to its server chips to help companies improve the efficiency of data centre cooling systems, with a view to cutting operating costs and prolonging the life of equipment.

Intel said it would make the data available for use by tools that model airflow and cooling in data centres, providing a more accurate way to uncover hot spots and cold spots, and to run simulations that show where to put new IT equipment for the greatest cooling efficiency.


More from Techworld

More relevant IT news


Send to a friend

Email this article to a friend or colleague:

PLEASE NOTE: Your name is used only to let the recipient know who sent the story, and in case of transmission error. Both your name and the recipient's name and address will not be used for any other purpose.

Techworld White Papers

Choose – and Choose Wisely – the Right MSP for Your SMB

End users need a technology partner that provides transparency, enables productivity, delivers...

Download Whitepaper

10 Effective Habits of Indispensable IT Departments

It’s no secret that responsibilities are growing while budgets continue to shrink. Download this...

Download Whitepaper

Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Information Archiving

Enterprise information archiving is contributing to organisational needs for e-discovery and...

Download Whitepaper

Advancing the state of virtualised backups

Dell Software’s vRanger is a veteran of the virtualisation specific backup market. It was the...

Download Whitepaper

Techworld UK - Technology - Business

Innovation, productivity, agility and profit

Watch this on demand webinar which explores IT innovation, managed print services and business agility.

Techworld Mobile Site

Access Techworld's content on the move

Get the latest news, product reviews and downloads on your mobile device with Techworld's mobile site.

Find out more...

From Wow to How : Making mobile and cloud work for you

On demand Biztech Briefing - Learn how to effectively deliver mobile work styles and cloud services together.

Watch now...

Site Map

* *