There's a downside to all of that big data, social media, and Netflix downloading: Energy and carbon. Data centers are massive consumers of energy, which is a huge component of the cost of the services as well as the environmental impact.
The energy component of operating a data center represents between 20%-30%, according to most estimates. Energy powers the servers and cools the facilities. This is an area that UK-based Verne Global has focused on: Building carbon-neutral data center next to a cheap rewnewable energy supply in Iceland, where geothermal energy is prevalent.
Tate Cantrell, CTO, hopped on the phone with the Rayno Report last week to tell us what's going on in his world of green, highly secure data. Verne, whose data center is built on the site of a former NATO air base in Keflavik, Iceland, counts BMW and RMS, a risk management firm, among its clients. Colt Technology Service group supplies Verne with modular, pre-fabricated data center modules which snap neatly into place in the highly secure, multi-tenant campus. Then clients go to work designing their own data-center architectures, which are often target applications such as high-performance computing.
Cantrell was recently one of three finalists for the AFCOM Data Center Manager of the Year in 2013. He's got degrees from the Georgia Institute of Technology and Tulane University. Trained as an electrical engineer, he knows a lot about high-performance computing platforms that are powered by green energy. Prior to Verne Global, Cantrell was VP of data center technologies at DuPont Fabros Technology, a data-center REIT. He built the operational strategies involved in the startup of the DuPont Fabros Development Wholesale Data Center business, the first of its kind in the industry.
Read on, as we tapped Cantrell's knowledge about what's going on in his world of green data.