Business Growth Through IT

White Paper from IDC and Rittal: Data Centres Are Increasingly Becoming a Competitive Factor

In a recent White Paper sponsored by Rittal, provider of IT infrastructure solutions, international market research company IDC examined the influence that data centres have on the economic success of small and medium-sized businesses. The results show that IT infrastructure and especially having one’s own data centre are perceived as essential in permanently securing competitiveness and expansion. The White Paper also shows that companies want to take advantage of new technologies such as cloud, Big Data and mobile computing in order to develop new revenue opportunities. The results are based on an IDC survey of around 500 managers and IT heads in medium-sized companies in Germany, the United Kingdom, Sweden, the Netherlands and Italy.

The most important findings at a glance:

Direct correlation between IT spending and revenue growth

If a company was commercially successful last year, this has a direct impact on the IT budget. As many as 98% of organizations with increasing sales reported that they would enlarge their investment in IT, or at least keep it at the same level. Furthermore, the survey showed that economically successful companies invest an average 20% more in their IT than businesses with flat sales figures.

Having one’s own data centre is the key to success

No fewer than 93% of the IT managers questioned found it important or very important for a company to have its own data centre. Of those companies surveyed that registered a growth in sales last year, 97% operated their own data centre.

Energy efficiency offers the potential to cut costs

Companies have some catching up to do, particularly when it comes to energy efficiency: 57% of respondents report PUE (power usage effectiveness) values exceeding 2.0. For every kilowatt-hour of electricity consumed by the IT equipment, roughly the same amount again is consumed by cooling and further building and plant technology. The PUE represents the energy consumed in the data centre in relation to the energy consumption of the computer: The closer the PUE value gets to one, the more efficient the data centre is. In industrial applications, a PUE value of 1.4 is regarded as excellent while large IT service provider with optimized systems reach values of 1.2 or less.

The data centre is too cold

The IT managers surveyed indicated that they operate their data centres at an average of temperature of 15.5°C. According to IDC, there are enormous savings potentials in this area. Instead of cooling entire rooms, it is more efficient to work with direct cooling within the rack or in the individual aisles. As a result, a higher overall temperature is allowed in the room, reducing the costs of cooling.

Greater reliability needed

Existing redundancy concepts are often out-of-date and not sufficiently reliable to ensure the high level of availability that customers expect in today’s competitive market environment. 24% percent of the IT administrators questioned cited redundant infrastructure as the key area in need of modernising. Overall, only 46% of IT experts assess the viability of their own IT as very high. Nevertheless, the majority (79%) of IT decision-makers believe that none of the demands is insurmountable.

Investment backlog in the data centre

The participants surveyed reported that their data centres were an average of 6.9 years old. With this age it is already difficult to use modern IT equipment as they have a higher energy density and must be highly available. For example, the energy efficiency of IT components and the cooling concepts for racks and server rooms have evolved considerably in recent years. This creates demand for IT modernisation.

New technologies are changing IT strategy

IT systems need to evolve continuously so that a company’s own data centre will also be able to meet such business needs as greater agility and cost efficiency in future. Six out of ten companies would like to meet the new market requirements with public or hybrid cloud capacity, but they shy away from the risks. This means, for example, a greater focus on in-house data centres, which are operated by the company itself and offer private cloud solutions. More than 75% of managers expect a modified IT strategy, either due to mobile computing or as a result of Big Data.

This research has shown that IT is an important factor in achieving business goals. This means that many companies are willing to invest in technologies such as cloud, Big Data, or mobile computing. The key to success is having one’s own data centre, as aspects such as reliability and availability have a high priority”, says Dirk Miller, Rittal’s Executive Vice President, Marketing.

“IT infrastructures need to be renewed to keep pace with the market. The question is whether to modernise or to rebuild”, explains Bernd Hanstein, Vice President Product Management IT at Rittal. “We see a great deal of potential in efficient, adaptive cooling concepts. Then IT managers can fully exploit the advantages of greater flexibility and reductions in ancillary costs.”

Modular data centres increase agility

The concept of a modular data centre helps companies achieve greater agility and scalability. This permits shorter product life cycles, as well as the more rapid commissioning of new systems or implementation of new regulations. Even if these concepts are still relatively new on the market, awareness of them is growing. According to IDC, this market segment has recorded double-digit growth in recent years. In EMEA, investments worth hundreds of millions amounts have been made.

“Modular data centres are a rational way of meeting current business challenges. The preconfigured modules or containers tend to be more cost effective than newly built conventional data centres, and they can be set up within a few weeks”, explains Chris Ingle, Vice President, IDC.

The study is available at http://www.rittal.com/idc-whitepaper

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Rittal Enclosures, Power Distribution, Climate Control, IT Infrastructure, Software & Services – http://www.rittal.co.uk

Rittal Cooling Units for Quiet Environments

Rittal’s ‘Blue e’ cooling units are usually found controlling the temperature within enclosures in workshops or on shop floors in the industrial sector where noise level is largely irrelevant as they cannot be heard above other equipment in these noisy environments.
In situations such as laboratories, offices or other more peaceful areas where cooling is required, Rittal’s TopTherm ‘Blue e’ roof-mounted cooling unit range successfully provide cooling where excessive noise would be an irritant to personnel working close to an enclosure.

With nominal outputs of 1.1 kW, Rittal roof-mounted cooling units for office applications offer viable solutions when it may have been assumed they would simply be too noisy.

Rittal’s ‘Blue e’ cooling units benefit from the intelligent and targeted use of energy, electronically commutated (EC) fan technology and are proven to achieve energy savings of up to 45%. Nano-coated condenser coils negate the need for filters and an integrated electric condensate evaporator maintains an efficient supply of cooling for longer periods of time extending maintenance intervals.

TopTherm roof mounted unit

Rittal Enclosures – The System http://www.rittal.co.uk

Rittal’s Efficient cooling solutions lower PUE for Node4

Utilising the latest in energy efficient cooling technonology from Rittal has dramatically lowered PUE at Node4’s latest datacentre at Northampton.

Space for future growth, using the latetst in energy efficient technology, is key to the long term strategy for the site. Working closely with Rittal, Node4 were able to maximise IT floor space using CoolWall technlogy, Cold Aisle Containment and Rittal’s TS IT racks, along with managed Power Distribution Units.

CoolWall was selected over traditional CRAC based cooling as the larger coils increased capacity of cooling whilst driving down running costs at elevated temperatures.

Designed to dramatically reduce PUE and improve the overall efficiency of the data centre, the system offered a further benefit of separate fans for ease of maintenance.

Rik Williams of Node4 said “Working in partnership with Rittal we were able to utilise their technical expertise and speed of supply to deliver the most cost effective solution”.

Node4 IMG_3088

Rittal enclosures, the system. http://www.rittal.co.uk

Rittal’s Support Arm System now with automatic potential equalisation

Rittal is the first manufacturer to ensure automatic potential equalisation as a standard with its new CP 60/120/180 support arm system, without any extra work and additional costs to users.

Where previously the focus has been on the mechanical structure of support arm systems, cable installations within support arm systems often had no passive internal safety devices, such as edge protection elements, to prevent chafed cables. Active protective measures were also absent, such as automatic potential equalisation throughout all the elements of a support arm system to protect the operator from live electrical voltage in the event of a defective cable.
With Rittal’s new CP 60/120/180 support arm system all the rotating elements have so-called sliding contacts to ensure a reliable electrical contact throughout the entire system. Clever edge protection elements made of plastic, which can simply be clipped onto the inner section between extrusions and corner pieces prevent cables from becoming pinched or chafed.

As an integrated modular system, Rittal’s CP 60/120/180 support arm system offers plant constructors uniform function, assembly and engineering solutions in one design, and meets all the load ranges up to 180 kg demanded by the market. It also offers major time savings during assembly, adjustment, and service.

CP Support arm.jpg-s

Rittal enclosures, the system. http://www.rittal.co.uk

Rittal Housings for TFT monitors

Rittal’s stylish housings, with a protection category of IP 65 shielding devices from exposure to dust and water jets, are designed to accommodate TFT screens up to 24” (measured along the diagonal) in the popular 16:9 and 16:10 widescreen formats.

A full-width viewing window made from a single-pane of safety glass maximises the display area and a combination of rounded edges and aluminium grips prevent injury. The side facing the operator has an attractive look and feel.

Housings containing TFT screens can be mounted quickly and efficiently thanks to a holder with the VESA 75/100 mounting hole pattern. A hinged door on the back of the housing provides easy access to the device. Manufactured from sheet steel, Rittal’s housing measures 650 x 450 x155 mm.

To provide additional ways of connecting to a machine according to the needs of the application, the housing can easily be mounted to a support arm system from Rittal’s CP 60/120/180 range.

With eccentrically mounted support arms, the housing can be placed in various positions, such as in niches. For the fitter’s convenience, pre-punched holes are provided in the reinforcing plate.

Rittal Operating Housing TFT 24inch-s

http://www.rittal.com/uk-en/product/list.action?categoryPath=/PG0001/PG0900ZUBEHOER1/PG0920ZUBEHOER1/PG1114ZUBEHOER1/

Rittal enclosure systems for industry and data centres http://www.rittal.co.uk

Save Energy by Cooling with Water

 

Rittal air/water heat exchangers are capable of cooling the air in an enclosure to a temperature lower than that of the ambient air. Heat to be removed is transferred to a water circuit and may be conveyed to a remote location before being dissipated. The lack of dependence on ambient air results in a maximum operating ambient air temperature of 70 °C.  Air is recirculated inside the enclosure maintaining an ingress protection category of IP 55.

Cooling with water may also be considered from an energy saving perspective. Air/water heat exchangers supplied with the eComfort controller incorporate the Eco-Mode control functionality. This employs an intelligent strategy to effectively target the use of energy by disabling the internal fan when the temperature inside the enclosure falls to a predetermined level below the setpoint. The fan is then pulsed periodically to ensure the accuracy of the sensed temperature before being permanently enabled when the temperature rises above the predetermined level.

Although the capital cost of a cooling system incorporating multiple air-to-water heat exchangers and a single water chiller may be greater than that of an equivalent number of refrigerant based cooling units, energy savings are typically in the region of 40 per cent.  Efficiency of water cooling systems may be further improved, particularly in the climate of the United Kingdom, by locating water chillers externally and integrating dry air coolers to take advantage of free cooling.

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Rittal enclosures for industry and data centres www.rittal.co.uk

 

Realism should rule in infrastructure debate | Opinion | The Engineer

Realism should rule in infrastructure debate | Opinion | The Engineer.

Stuart Nathan

So here we are again. Business case for High Speed 2, take five. In some ways  this reminds me a little of Lewis Carroll’s the Hunting of the Snark — not a  poem in several chapters, according to Carroll, but an Agony, in several Fits.  The progress of HS2 is indeed agonising, and the paroxysms of opposition do seem  fit-like. And, like much of Carroll’s work, many dismiss it as nonsense.

There are those who think that taking five tries at the business case for  such a large project smacks of desperation. Among those is Evan Davies,  presenter of Radio 4’s Today programme, who noted that the argument in the new  document had shifted from the increased speed of travel to the improvements in  carrying capacity. Doesn’t that mean you’ve run out of ideas, he asked transport  secretary Patrick McLoughlan yesterday.

But of course capacity has been at the centre of the strategy of HS2 from the  start, as readers of our coverage of the project will know. The  Engineer has been broadly supportive of HS2 because we’ve always spoken to  the engineers involved in planning the project rather than politicians, and  they’ve given us arguments that make more sense. Whether they make £50bn-worth  of sense is another matter, and that’s an argument worth having (and where our  support comes up against serious questions).

It’s the issue of capacity and alternatives which the latest study seeks to  answer. This government’s record with statistics is dodgy to say the least, so  its conclusions must be subject to scrutiny. But the assertion that upgrading  the West Coast Mainline to provide the same capacity benefits as HS2 would lead  to 14 years of service disruption and weekend closures should at least inject  some more realism into the arguments of HS2 critics.

It’s always seemed that suggesting the approach of upgrading existing lines  as an alternative has seemed glib, as though it would be easy, or cheap, or free  from any disruption. Whether or not the business case document is correct, there  can be little doubt that such a severe upgrade would cause a long period of  chaos. Other ‘simple’ fixes would surely also require more complex work than  might first appear — can you just replace current rolling stock with  double-decker trains without extensive rail replacement, reinforcement,  rebuilding of bridges, and station refurbishment to cope with extra  passengers?

If the report  refocuses the pro and con camps on the actual issues, rather than on rhetoric  which doesn’t address the actual engineering, then that has to be a good thing.  A project such as this needs to be discussed, and not in the context of  political point-scoring and hysteria.

The argument that HS2 will take express trains off the West Coast line and  allow it to carry more stopping services seems sound and is familiar to us. It’s  also argued that this would allow the West Coast to carry more freight, taking  heavy traffic off the road. The arguments are strongly dependent on the demand  for rail continuing to rise, and this is something worth debating — with  increasing internet capacity and ‘virtual meetings’, do businesspeople really  need to travel that much? If not, would non-business travel justify the cost?  Would people rather take the train than drive?

We idly wondered whether the arguments over HS2 would have been different if  the project were scheduled to start in the North, with phase one connecting  Leeds and Manchester to Birmingham and phasetwo completing the link to London.  Would there have been less opposition, with the plan more clearly emphasising  the connectivity where there is currently none? The cynical view is that of  course there wouldn’t – the opponents would just be saying “Why build the  line in the North where there aren’t enough people to use it? Put it in the  South where the trains are so full that the doors won’t close!”

Read more:  http://www.theengineer.co.uk/opinion/comment/realism-should-rule-in-infrastructure-debate/1017385.article#ixzz2jD7pLcgD

MDS visits Rittal

The Motor Driven Systems Conference visited Rotherham on Wednesday in the second of five UK dates aimed at helping industry professionals generate huge financial savings from motor driven apparatus.

 Hosted at Rittal’s UK headquarters in Rotherham, presentations from BPMA, ESTA, Carbon Trust and GAMBICA, among many others, contributed to a lively debate on how to reduce energy and make these potential savings a reality.

 John Wilkins, Marketing Manager at Rittal commented, “We were delighted to have hosted this important event and to have played our part in helping UK industry better understand the key issues surrounding improved industrial energy efficiency.   The quality of both speakers and papers was exceptionally high and the reaction from delegates was tremendous”.

 The day was opened by Steve Schofield, Director of the British Pump Manufacturers’ Association (BPMA), who offered an appraisal of Europe’s position on Energy Audits.  He said after the event, “The comprehensive programme of papers, and the focused nature of the topics covered, enabled all attendees to take away a great deal of acutely relevant information. I feel sure this will help them and their colleagues to implement good strategies for improved energy efficiency across their respective operations”.

Next stop for MDS is Redditch on the 5th November, at the UK headquarters of WEG Electric Motors. For more information about this event and to book your place, please visit the dedicated MDS website – www.motordrivensystems.com.

The remaining two events will be held at Hatfield and Bristol over the coming few weeks.

For furth details about these evnets Contact:

Andrew Castle – Touchwave Media andrew@touchwavemedia.co.uk T: 07785 290034

Rittal Ltd enclosure solutions www.rittal.co.uk