HP Promises Zero Energy Data Centres

Hewlett-Packard has promised to produce an architecture for data centres which need no energy.

HP Labs has published details of the Net Zero Energy Data Centre – a site which are is located alongside renewable energy sources, and which requires no external energy input. As well as the renewable energy source, the data centres will use analytics to predict demand and the availability of resources, and management technology to schedule jobs when energy is available.

Running jobs when the sun shines

The idea is very similar to Microsoft’s suggestion of self-powering data plants, co-located with renewable energy sources such as landfill sites and farms which produce methane.

The difference is that HP’s Sustainable Ecosystems Research Group will suggest that analytics and management technology can reduce energy demands by synchronising demands with energy supply – in essence running jobs when the sun shines and solar power is available.

The group will describe its ideas in a paper to be given at this week’s ITherm 2012 in San Diego (or to give its full name, the IEEE Intersociety Conference on Thermal and Thermomechanical Phenomena in Electrical Systems).

“The HP Net-Zero Energy Data Center not only aims to minimize the environmental impact of computing, but also has a goal of reducing energy costs associated with data-center operations to extend the reach of IT accessibility globally,” said  Cullen Bash,  director of sustainable ecosystems research at HP.

As with everything in IT generally at present, the secret is in analytics, which is used to “shape” demand and predict energy supply, delaying non-critical tasks.

The Net Zero data centre will be demonstrated at HP’s Discover event in Las Vegas next week.

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Peter Judge

Peter Judge has been involved with tech B2B publishing in the UK for many years, working at Ziff-Davis, ZDNet, IDG and Reed. His main interests are networking security, mobility and cloud

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