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Energies 2017, 10(11), 1732; https://doi.org/10.3390/en10111732

Investigation on the Energy Saving Potential of Using a Novel Dew Point Cooling System in Data Centres

1,2
,
1,3
,
1,* and 1,*
1
School of Engineering and Computer Science, University of Hull, Kingston upon Hull HU6 7RX, UK
2
School of Civil and Transportation Engineering, Guangdong University of Technology, Guangzhou, 510006, China
3
School of Mechanical and Energy Engineering, Jimei University, Xiamen, 361021, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 22 September 2017 / Revised: 11 October 2017 / Accepted: 26 October 2017 / Published: 28 October 2017
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Abstract

Abstract: Information technology (IT) has brought significant changes in people’s lives. As an important part of the IT industry, data centres (DCs) have been rapidly growing in both the number and size over the past 40 years. Around 30% to 40% of electricity consumption in DCs is used for space cooling, thus leading to very inefficient DC operation. To identify ways to reduce the energy consumption for space cooling and increase the energy efficiency of DCs’ operation, a dedicated investigation into the energy usage in DCs has been undertaken and a novel high performance dew point cooling system was introduced into a DC operational scheme. Based on the cooling load in DCs, a case study was carried out to evaluate the energy consumptions and energy usage effectiveness when using the novel dew point cooling system in different scales of DCs in various climates. It was found that by using the novel dew point cooling system, for 10 typical climates a DC can have a much lower power usage effectiveness (PUE) of 1.10 to 1.22 compared to that of 1.7 to 3.7 by using existing traditional cooling systems, leading to significantly increased energy efficiency of the DC operation. In addition, the energy performance by managing the cooling air supply at the different levels in DCs, i.e., room, row and rack level, was simulated by using a dynamic computer model. It was found that cooling air supply at rack level can provide a higher energy efficiency in DCs. Based on the above work, the energy saving potential in DCs was conducted by comparing DCs using an the novel dew point cooling system and the optimum management scheme for the cooling air supply to that using traditional air cooling systems and the same supply air management. Annual electricity consumptions for the two cases were given. It was found that by using the novel dew point cooling system and optimum management system for the cooling air supply, an 87.7~91.6% electricity consumption saving for space cooling in DCs could be achieved in 10 typical cities at 10 selected climatic conditions. View Full-Text
Keywords: dew point cooling; data centres; energy saving; energy usage effectiveness; cooling load dew point cooling; data centres; energy saving; energy usage effectiveness; cooling load
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Bi, Y.; Wang, Y.; Ma, X.; Zhao, X. Investigation on the Energy Saving Potential of Using a Novel Dew Point Cooling System in Data Centres. Energies 2017, 10, 1732.

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