More Minneapolis colocation centers are striving to increase performance while cutting down on costs and rack space. Their preferred solution is high-density servers that can deliver up to four times the power while maintaining a smaller footprint.

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While it may fly in the face of common perception, ‘high-density’ data centers, which host servers that can require upwards of 12kW of power, can save money in operating and capital costs and pass those savings on to the consumer. Properly implemented, this design strategy enables higher efficiencies and lower costs without negatively impacting overall service availability.

Capital Cost Benefits

New colocation centers are being built all over Minneapolis and the surrounding area. When it comes to new builds, the physical size of the building has a critical impact on construction costs. More racks require greater distribution of power, which is also expensive.

Choosing high-density servers enables colocation center managers to use a smaller building with fewer racks and rack power configurations while at the same time offering hosting services to a high customer volume. Other costs that are dependent on building size also go down, such as overhead lighting and cable length, eliminating the need to pass higher expenses on to customers.

Operating Cost Benefits

Power and cooling are essential to Minneapolis colocation centers. So handling greater power loads in the same physical space results in environmental and operating cost efficiencies.

High-density data centers have the power and cooling capability of over 12kW per equipment rack, as opposed to the lower-density average of 4-6kW.  The more storage, network, and computing services that can be delivered per rack area cost, the better it is for customer prices and the environment.

High density is not just for new-build colocation centers. Existing buildings can supplement their CRAC (computer room air conditioning) units with high-density cooling modules, creating a mixed-density environment that can still lower costs.

The Bottom Line

It’s happening everywhere: data center densities are rising in Minneapolis, and the trend shows no signs of stopping. Instead of building bigger facilities, colocation center managers opt for a higher-density model where the racks can hold up to 60kW of power load. These designs have demonstrated benefits that make a difference in service prices:

  • Lower construction costs
  • Fewer racks and PDUs needed
  • Less expensive to cool: high-density cooling is on average 20% to 30% less than traditional air conditioning
  • Cooling technology needs less energy to move air over a smaller distance and also requires less chiller capacity

Moving to a high-density data center environment benefits both operator and customer in terms of reduced costs and limited environmental impact, making it an appealing solution for everyone involved.

Is your colocation center high-density or making the move in that direction by retrofitting structures and equipment? If so, have the lower prices been passed on to your customers? Let us know your thoughts in the Comments box below.

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