Energy benchmarking offers a very effective way to evaluate the performance of a data center facility and compare it to similar facilities. Comparisons are a quick and easy way to identify poorly operating areas, which typically have the highest potential for economical modifications that reduce operating cost and/or increase the load capacity of a data center. Benchmarking is particularly valuable as a precursor to an expansion of a facility, because increases in system capacity and identification of best practice design approaches can be used to reduce the cost and increase the energy efficiency of new space.
The following steps guide the operator through the benchmarking process, from the initial definition of the scope of the benchmarking through the initial evaluation of the results. Widely used by most manufacturing industries to improve product quality, benchmarking is also a powerful tool for improving the quality, reliability, and performance of data center facilities. Once the magnitude of power use is identified on a system basis, limited resources can be prioritized for the areas where the greatest savings can be achieved.
Author(s): Greenberg, S., B. Tschudi, and J. Weale