20 Feb 2012 London - A new European Commission-funded project aims to tackle the energy-efficiency implications of data centres. The CoolEmAll programme will take a holistic approach to improving data centre energy efficiency covering not just the role of IT hardware or facilities equipment but also the applications they ultimately support. The project aims to deliver two key tools to help data centres monitor and manage their energy consumption that will be developed and enhanced over the next two years.
The energy efficiency goals of the CoolEmAll project are particularly relevant given the EC's February 2012 announcement about establishing Europe as a leader in High Performance Computing (HPC). The EC plans to double its investment in HPC from 630 million euro to 1.2 billion euro. Half of the budget would be for development and training and for new centres of excellence, creating thousands of jobs.
The CoolEmAll project, along with other EC-funded data centre and HPC projects should benefit from this investment and the higher profile that will be given to HPC. Members of the project consortium include several high-profile HPC research organisations including Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center (PSNC) and the High Performance Computing Centre University of Stuttgart (HLRS).
Neelie Kroes, European Commission Vice-President responsible for the Digital Agenda, has said that HPC is a crucial enabler for European industry and for more jobs in Europe. "High Performance Computing is a crucial enabler for European industry and for more jobs in Europe. It's investments like HPC that deliver innovations improving daily life. We've got to invest smartly in this field because we cannot afford to leave it to our competitors."
The CoolEmAll project addresses an important aspect of HPC - energy efficiency. Supercomputers, and their related data centre infrastructure, consume large amounts of energy and resources. The CoolEmAll project will evaluate data centre and HPC energy efficiency by looking at the interaction of high performance computing hardware, data centre facilities (heating and cooling) as well as the role of applications in energy and carbon efficiency.
The project aims to develop two key tools to help monitor and manage data centre energy consumption:
commercial data centre operators, to build on the research done by the CoolEmAll consortium.
The main goal of the CoolEmAll project is to increase understanding of how a range of factors influences the overall efficiency of data centres. These include not only the power consumption of IT hardware and different approaches to cooling (e.g., mechanical chillers or free air cooling) but also the role of specific applications and workloads.
The seven members of the CoolEmAll consortium are Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center, The Toulouse IT Research Institute, High Performance Computing Centre University of Stuttgart, The Catalonia Institute for Energy Research, Atos, 451 Research and Christmann informationstechnik.
More information is available at http://www.coolemall.eu/