Within the United States are about 3 million data centers, the buildings or rooms housing computer servers. Of these 3 million, around 3,000 are large data centers and the rest are small server rooms in businesses.
Energy management is especially crucial for data centers as energy costs continue to rise for industrial spaces. Successful energy management relies on detailed energy usage data. Power meters are a useful tool to gather feedback on energy consumption and daily usage.
Power Use Effectiveness
Power use effectiveness (PUE) is the ratio of how efficiently a computer data center uses energy. Of the world's larger data centers, most average a PUE of 2.5, As a best practice, PUE should be less than 1.5. PUE is calculated with the following equation:
Power use effectiveness = total energy used in data center/energy used to run processors
In addition to lowering their PUE, data centers can implement a number of best practices to cut energy usage. Some of these best practices include:
- Upgrade hardware to be more efficient
- Use liquid cooling instead of fans
- Eliminate inactive sensors
- Redesign rooms to promote better airflow
The most practical method for improving PUE and implementing best practices is to use a power meter to monitor energy. Information from a power meter such as feedback on energy consumption and daily usage are effective energy management tools. Combining power monitoring with best practices makes data centers more energy efficient.