Power systems are a crucial component of every data center. Not only do these systems supply energy to important devices, they can also prevent catastrophe from occurring in the event of an outage. Implementing the following guidelines can help companies avoid the perils of insufficient power systems, which can have calamitous effects on future success.
- Consider Utilizing an Uninterruptible Power Supply
Unlike a backup generator, which often entails a delay between when an outage occurs and when standby power is available, an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) provides immediate accessibility when the main power supply fails.
In many cases, UPSs are considered a short-term solution used to provide technicians a window of opportunity to properly shut down equipment, while also affording time to save significant data. UPSs can also perform other essential functions within a data center:
- Ensure Operational Continuity – Even the smallest electrical anomaly can have a dire impact on data storage, as well as equipment. A UPS enables operational continuity by offering a constant source of backup power.
- Mitigate Impact of Power Surges – A power surge can greatly damage computer equipment, resulting in exorbitant costs for repairs and replacements. In the event of a power surge, a UPS will revert to battery power to avoid damaging expensive devices.
- Perform Regular Audits of Power Components
Regularly scheduled auditing of power systems is highly important. Failure to do so can lead to many unexpected occurrences if the main power supply becomes unavailable for an extended period of time.
That’s why IT managers must be fully aware of the limitations of their current power systems. This includes keeping abreast of product specifications, as well as submitting to routine maintenance, which can help expose issues before they become a larger concern.
- Implement a Dependable Cooling Device
All data centers should implement efficient cooling solutions to maintain equipment. Generally, IT managers will have a few configurations to choose from, each of which offers distinct benefits depending on the circumstances.
When dealing with extreme heat loads in their computer rooms, a room and rack cooling solution may prove ideal. These systems can handle high-intensity loads of up to 200 watts per sq. foot or more. In situations where equipment is frequently moved around a room, computer room air conditioning can be a good option. This can keep temperature and humidity fluctuations to a minimum, which is important for protecting vital computer components.
- Don’t Let Administrative Hurdles Impede Progress
Conflicting administrative departments, each with their own opinions on the way things should be, can sometimes impede necessary modification of power supplies. Implementing procedures for such decision-making can reduce the amount of time spent debating on the best course of action, which usually results in interminable delays and lost business.
- Choose the Right Power Distribution Unit for Your Needs
UPSs can also help regulate power distribution to central devices. While these power distribution units (PDUs) can vastly increase power availability within an IT environment, it’s beneficial to be aware of some important distinctions.
Rack-based PDUs convert electrical flow to an adequate level when powering a piece of equipment, which prevents circuitry overloads from occurring. Floor-mounted PDUs receive power from a main source, then distribute this power to smaller devices based on a prescribed process. While rack-based units can be moved freely around a data center, floor-mounted units are usually permanently placed.
- Document Power Equipment Changes
Tracking progress can be a great way for a data center to implement new solutions by focusing on what works and what doesn’t. This is particularly relevant as it pertains to the purchase of new equipment, which may not always perform as well as initially expected.
Documenting such changes can offer a concrete assessment of successes and failures relating to power systems. Such documentation can be highly useful in the long term, especially when illustrating to management the need for new or upgraded devices.
- Employ Contingency Plans
A suitable contingency plan is fundamental to make certain important processes stay on track. Considerations can range from retaining enough fuel for backup generators to ensuring cooling devices remain operational. Anticipating future needs will prove quite useful should disaster strike.
- Replace Outdated Systems
Given the rapid pace of technological changes, it’s important for equipment to be updated regularly. This will ensure optimal performance from your power supply, which is key for the proper maintenance of a data center or computer room.
For instance, UPSs only recently began offering users both high availability and efficient power consumption in the same unit. As a result, companies that purchased previous models may greatly benefit from upgrading to this improved technology. Not only can such upgrades enable better performance from equipment, they can also cut costs drastically by reducing unnecessary energy consumption.
- Prioritize Value Over Equipment Cost
Disputes over cutting costs on equipment are common within the IT industry, as purchasing the necessary devices can be quite expensive. While some may prefer a fiscally conservative approach when it comes to power systems, this can actually harm a business greatly. For this reason, those at the helm of an IT department must take the long view regarding overall costs in order to ensure best practices.
- Apply Specialized Testing Procedures
Advanced data center testing techniques can shed light on existing vulnerabilities, while also uncovering emerging issues that can become detrimental if left unchecked. These specialized testing methods can also help staff determine if power supplies are functioning at peak-performance.
Such testing can include a number of sophisticated procedures, from facility-rollover testing, which establishes how well emergency power will perform, to infrared thermography, which can identify hot zones within equipment components.
We Can Help You Boost Power and Increase Efficiency
Thanks to our years of experience in the IT industry, Titan Power can help optimize your current power system to allow for more efficient processes overall. For more information on all that we can do for your business, please call today at 1-800-509-6170.