Data Center Optimization Initiative

Data Center Optimization Initiative

Jason Hallenbeck, Data Center Consultant
Wednesday Mar 22nd, 2017

containmentAs of August 1, 2016, the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative (FDCCI) is superseded by the Data Center Optimization Initiative (DCOI).  By Executive Order 13693, all agencies are required to install and monitor advanced energy meters in data centers.  Consistent with the executive order, existing tiered data centers are required to achieve and maintain a PUE of less than 1.5 and all new data centers must be designed and operated to maintain a PUE no greater than 1.4, and are encouraged to be designed and operated to achieve a PUE no greater than 1.2.  By the end of fiscal year 2018, agencies shall close at least 35% of tiered data centers government-wide.

Cooling, on average, accounts for 30 percent of the total facility power usage inside the data center.  Enclosures are a critical part of airflow inside of the data center.  Preventing bypass and recirculated airflow are critical for allowing you to increase the supply/return temperatures and lowering fan speeds of equipment. 

The simplest step in moving towards an efficient PUE, is to implement best practices inside and outside of the enclosure. The goal inside the enclosures is to seal as many opening within the enclosures as possible; this allows the maximum amount of conditioned air to reach equipment and exhaust leaves through the rear of the enclosures and is not able to circulate back to the front. Multiple airflow accessories such as blanking panels, brush grommet rail kits, and raised floor grommets can be used in order to prevent bypass and recirculated air.

Outside of the enclosure, overhead panels and doors can create contained areas of conditioned or exhaust air. Great Lakes provides a number of doors and overhead panels that can function in a multitude of containment strategies. With the ability to retrofit accessories as needed, containment options are able to be easily utilized in existing data centers. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) can be utilized to not only identify the current state of airflow within the data center, but it can predict how infrastructure changes—such as containment—will affect PUE and overall data center efficiency.

The following paper provides several examples of containment strategies that Great Lakes has implemented in various types of data centers.

To learn more about these strategies and how Great Lakes can assist with maintaining compliance the DCOI, please contact us at 1-866-TRY-GLCC or through our contact

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