Robert L Mitchell: Data Center Density Hits the Wall
Thu, January 21, 2010 — Computerworld — Industrial Light & Magic has been replacing its servers with the hottest new IBM (IBM) BladeCenters -- literally, the hottest.
For every new rack ILM brings in, it cuts overall power use in the data center by a whopping 140 kW -- a staggering 84% drop in overall energy use.
But power density in the new racks is much higher: Each consumes 28 kW of electricity, versus 24 kW for the previous generation. Every watt of power consumed is transformed into heat that must be removed from each rack -- and from the data center.
The new racks are equipped with 84 server blades, each with two quad-core processors and 32GB of RAM. They are powerful enough to displace seven racks of older BladeCenter servers that the special effects company purchased about three years ago for its image-processing farm.
To cool each 42U rack, ILM's air conditioning system must remove more heat than would be produced by nine household ovens running at the highest temperature setting. This is the power density of the new infrastructure that ILM is slowly building out across its raised floor.
more of the CIO.com article from Robert L. Mitchell