Chapter 17. Future of Data Center Efficiencies—Think Outside the Grid

The costs of mission-critical facilities have never been as "target rich" for savings as they are now. After reviewing the power and cooling challenges facing the industry, I have come to realize that the best way to sort out the appropriate site or location is to recognize that there is no silver bullet to challenges and that one size or tier does not fit all.

I encourage the reader to think outside the box in resolving data center challenges. As smart vendors and users, we often act as lemmings to put industry bandages on super-sized issues or challenges.

In the world of multibillion-dollar total cost of ownership (TCO) modeling, wouldn't it be prudent to aggressively go after the larger components in a meaningful way? By that I mean locating a facility in a tax-friendly environment. Zero percent or nearly zero percent sales tax over 15 to 20 years can be a $30 million to $70 million savings. Compound that with a market or high utility rate for a 20- to 60-megawatt load and you can realize a $60 million to $100 million overpayment in power. With just those two components of the TCO, a user could overpay by up to $170 million to $200 million right at the start.

The thinking outside the box should come from the C suite; in other words, from the top down. Top managers should lay down the challenge to separate critical from noncritical applications to determine the distance between a primary footprint and a secondary ...

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