IBM isn't exactly playing with fire, but it is playing with higher temps in its new North Carolina data center. At a glance, it might seem counterproductive to raise temperatures, but IBM is doing so in order to reduce its energy usage.
To make sure things don't get too far out of hand, IBM has equipped its 60,000 square-foot data center with thousands of sensors that dynamically keeps tabs on temps, humidity, air flow, and circuits. And to help with cooling, the company will rely largely on outside air.
"What we tried to do here is have a data center that is more instrumented, interconnected and intelligent than anything we have done before," said Joe Dzaluk, IBM's vice president of infrastructure and resource management at the Global Technology Services division.
Temps could rise as high as 80.6 degrees, which is exactly the latest environmental recommendation by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers, who recently raised the threshold from 77 degrees because of improvements in equipment design.