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IBM Photosynthesizing the Data Center

By John | November 1, 2007

First IBM didn’t have enough light, and now it will add water.

I was talking to a neighbor last night about IBM’s effort in “Greening the Data Center.” My neighbor happens to work for a large Atlanta-based company that has recently moved its data center to Austin, Texas. It had built the new data center a few years ago with the expectation of getting at least 10 years out of the center for growth, but it has recently realized that the current growth rate will cause it to run out of power in less than 2 years. This problem is common for most companies due to unexpected changes in processor and blade technologies. Rack server consumption was about 5 kilowatts around 5 years ago, and today they use as much as 30 kilowatts.

How can IBM Help?

When I asked him how is your company is going to deal with this, he said, “You will get a kick out of this”–he knew that I am an old timer–”IBM is going back to water cooled technologies.” I laughed because all the computers that I worked with thirty years ago worked this way. The data centers back then all had plumbing and used distilled water to dissipate the heat generated by the large machines. Then, I turned to him and asked, “Given all the water restrictions we are having here in Atlanta, are you sure that water will always be an abundant commodity in the future as well?” He said, “Good point. I need to bring that up to my management.”

Topics: egreen, ibm | 1 Comment »

One Response to “IBM Photosynthesizing the Data Center”

  1. eraser’s blog » Blog Archive » IBM Photosynthesizing the Data Center Says:
    November 1st, 2007 at 2:45 am

    [...] for a large Atlanta based company that has recently moved its data center to Austin Texas. … John M Willis – ESM BLOG [...]