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Thermodynamic Performance of Containerized Eco-POD Data Centers
Keywords: Eco POD, Energy efficiency, Data Centers
The traditional “brick and mortar” design of data centers has many limitations including long deployment time, limited expansion options, and high capital and operating expenditures. Recently, containerized/modular data centers have been introduced which have advantage of faster deployment time and lower capital expenditures. However, operational energy efficiency of such containerized data centers connected to the on-site available chilled water supply or traditional mechanical chiller systems is not necessarily significantly improved. In this paper, we review a novel design of the containerized data centers, called “Eco POD”, which utilizes a combination of available outside air cooling and inbuilt mechanical chilling systems to increase the cooling energy efficiency significantly. Depending on the outside air conditions, the Eco POD has flexibility to utilize non-conditioned outside air, fully-conditioned air, or partly conditioned air to achieve required IT inlet air conditions. This flexibility in cooling delivery infrastructure is achieved by installing multiple DX units and blowers of small cooling capacity and controlling the operation of each unit to provide when-required incremental cooling capacity at a high efficiency. For such an Eco POD, we focus on how the annual operating energy cost and average efficiency of the Eco POD can be analyzed using a multi-scale IT-facility energy model described previously in the literature. Using this model, two case studies are presented to show the impact of the location and the choice of acceptable inlet air temperature envelope on the cooling efficiency of the Eco POD.
Niru Kumari,
Hewlett-Packard Co.
Palo Alto, CA

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