Vertiv formerly Emerson Network Power, has released six data centre infrastructure trends to watch in 2017. This year’s trends follow the 2016 data center trends published by Emerson Network Power last year.
Below are six infrastructure trends shaping the data centre ecosystem in 2017:
1. Infrastructure races to keep up with connectivity at the edge
Distributed IT and the industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) are pushing IT resources closer to users and industrial processes. While the data centre remains core to delivering applications and services, such as point of sale and inventory management, network closets and micro data centres are growing in number and importance as internet-connected sensors and devices proliferate and remote users demand faster access to information.
Responding to these changes, organisations will turn to pre-configured micro data centre solutions that support fast deployment, greater standardisation and remote management across distributed IT locations.
2. Thermal management expands to sustainability
Data centre cooling has changed more in the last five years than any other data centre system. Fueled by the desire to drive down energy costs, traditional approaches that focused on delivering “maximum cooling” have been displaced by more sophisticated approaches focused on removing heat as efficiently as possible.
While energy efficiency remains a core concern, water consumption and refrigerant use have emerged as important considerations in select geographies. Thanks to the expanded range of thermal management strategies available today, data centre operators are tailoring thermal management based on data centre location and resource availability.
3. Security responsibilities extend to data centre management
While data breaches continue to garner the majority of security-related headlines, security has become a data centre availability issue as well. The 2016 Ponemon Institute Cost of Data Center Outages study revealed that cyber attacks accounted for 22 per cent of the data centre outages studied.
4. DCIM proves its value
DCIM is continuing to expand its value, both in the issues it can address and its ability to manage the increasingly complex data centre ecosystem. Forward-thinking operators are using DCIM to address data centre challenges, such as regulatory compliance, Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL), and managing hybrid environments. Finally, colocation providers are finding DCIM a valuable tool in analysing their costs by customer and in providing their customers with remote visibility into their assets.
5. Alternatives to lead-acid batteries become viable
New solutions are emerging to the weak link in data centre power systems as operators seek to reduce the footprint, weight and total costs of traditional valve-regulated lead-acid (VRLA) batteries. The most promising of these is lithium-ion batteries. With prices decreasing and chemistries and construction continuing to advance, lithium-ion batteries are becoming a viable option for the data centre and are being scaled to handle row- and room-level requirements. While this battery technology has been available previously, the improving economics have spurred increased commercialisation efforts in the data centre industry.
6. Data centre design and deployment become more integrated
Speed-to-market is one of the key drivers of the companies developing the bulk of data centre capacity today and they’ve found the traditional silos between the engineering and construction phases cumbersome and unproductive.
As a result, they are embracing a turnkey approach to data centre design and deployment that leverages integrated, modular designs, off-site construction and disciplined project management. Vendors that bring together infrastructure expertise, design and engineering capabilities and sophisticated project management to deliver a turnkey capability can build better data centres faster.