Capgemini Offers Modular Green Data Centres


Capgemini has magically turned its Merlin green data centre technology into a marketable package

The modules used to build Capgemini’s Merlin data centre in Swindon can be used to create a low-cost, scalable centre in any available space, the company claims. It is now hoping to create a new generation of mini data centres, according to Paul Anderson, programme director of Outsourcing Services at Capgemini UK.

The modules are mobile, self-contained units that are 95 percent recyclable. The ones used in Merlin were built off-site and transported to the warehouse that Capgemini acquired in Swindon.

Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere

A module being fitted inside Merlin
A module being fitted inside Merlin

Similarly, the company argued, the same modules could be delivered to any existing premises anywhere. Anderson believes that this could eliminate the need to build specialised data centres in the future. Benefitting the environment and saving money simultaneously.

The modules are also weatherproof so they could provide their own housing on a suitably secured site, depending on the availability of a telecoms link and power, possibly using a generator and an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) for back-up.

The idea is similar to that proposed by Colt earlier this year.

Capgemini has claimed that the resulting data centres require 30 percent less water and 50 percent less power. This is due in main to the intelligent, fresh-air cooling system. Only eight kilowatts of power is required for every 232 kilowatts of loading on the servers.

The power consumed by data centres has been highlighted by the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) Energy Efficiency Scheme and the government’s recent energy statement threatening business energy bill increases up to 43 percent by 2020.

The efficiency of the system has resulted in a Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) rating of 1.08. A perfect PUE score would be unity so that means the energy conversion is near perfect. A conventional data centre can have a typical PUE around 2.5.

Anderson said that going green is not the expensive proposition that it has been made out to be. Capgemini has now made plans to offer the modules to clients as a low-cost, sustainable option.

The Merlin data centre will be officially opened on October 12 and one of its first clients was the government’s Environment Agency.