The Raritan Blog

On Switched Rack PDUs and Decreasing Energy Consumption in the Data Center

Michael Bord
July 1, 2014


There are a lot of ways to decrease energy consumption in the data center; everything from building hot/cold aisle containment systems, to distributing higher voltages at the rack, to eliminating voltage step-downs, to building a brand new facility in a Scandinavian country and using airside economizers to cool equipment.  The obvious downside with any of these is that they may require a big overhaul of your existing infrastructure, disrupt operations, or be too costly to undertake.

Switched PDUs are a lower cost solution that can easily fit into an existing infrastructure or be a part of a new data center build. Most importantly, they tackle several issues in one shot.  

Here’s how switched PDUs can help you to decrease energy consumption:

  1. The information they collect from the individual outlets your devices are plugged into (A, V, kW, kVA, kWh) allows you to see which servers are good candidates for decommissioning or virtualization.
  2. That same information can be used to see whether there are regularly recurring periods of time when production servers aren’t being utilized and can be switched off remotely, and subsequently switched back on when needed.
  3. Implementing the latter two initiatives not only reduces IT power consumption, it also  decreases the power needed for cooling servers that are not being fully utilized or utilized at all for that matter.     

For those willing to go the distance to decrease energy consumption, switched PDUs can also be used to deliver higher voltages to the rack, and/or can directly drop the distribution voltage to a lower level for the server cards.  So it’s clear to see how switched PDUs can be both a great first step and part of a long-term strategy for decreasing data center energy consumption.

Test drive a switched PDU or schedule a call with a Raritan power expert today!