IBM Research Innovation, Partnerships and New Services Help Clients Increase Efficiency, Achieve Sustainability and Cut Costs
Date: 23 Jun 2009
Location: San Francisco, CA
Ahead of a Green and Beyond Summit here today, IBM (NYSE: IBM) detailed new computing systems, research initiatives, client results and partnerships aimed at meeting the rising demand by businesses and governments worldwide to reduce energy costs and consumption by optimizing their systems and resources, while at the same time becoming more accountable and socially responsible.
Rich Lechner, IBM vice president for Energy and the Environment, said that over the past few years, a new world has emerged -- one with volatile energy supplies, more awareness of the impact of greenhouse gas (GHG), global financial crises -- that makes sustainable business practices a critical imperative for clients.
"Businesses, governments and people everywhere have expressed their desire to make more efficient use of energy and natural resources," said Lechner. "They are investing in making systems intelligent by building smarter and greener buildings, IT infrastructures, supply chains, and other business operations, as well as utility and water systems. With today's announcements, we signal our clear desire to partner with them every step of the way."
IBM made the announcements in support of its Green and Beyond Summit for Industry Leaders at the California Academy of Sciences, a gathering of more than 200 energy experts and leaders from business, government, academia and the venture capital community.
New Partnerships - Green Sigma Coalition
IBM announced today the creation of an industry alliance with key leaders in metering, monitoring, automation, data communications, software and analytics to provide smart solutions for energy, water, waste and greenhouse gas management.
Charter members of the Green Sigma Coalition are Johnson Controls (link resides outside of ibm.com), Honeywell Building Solutions (link resides outside of ibm.com), ABB (link resides outside of ibm.com), Eaton (link resides outside of ibm.com), ESS (link resides outside of ibm.com), Cisco (link resides outside of ibm.com), Siemens (link resides outside of ibm.com) Building Technologies Division, Schneider Electric (link resides outside of ibm.com) and SAP (link resides outside of ibm.com). The coalition members will work with IBM to integrate their products and services with IBM's Green Sigma solution.
Green Sigma is an IBM solution that applies Lean Six Sigma principles and practices to energy, water, waste and GHG emissions throughout a company's operations -- transportation systems, data centers and IT systems, manufacturing and distribution centers, office facilities, retail space, research and development sites. It combines real-time metering and monitoring with advanced analytics and dashboards that allow clients to make better decisions about energy and water usage, waste and GHG emissions to improve efficiency, lower costs and reduce environmental impact.
"It is becoming increasingly important that we use energy more efficiently both to better utilize the resource and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions," said Dr Richard L. Sandor, Chairman and Founder of the Chicago Climate Exchange. "We are encouraged that the results of these types of collaborative efforts between public utilities and industry leaders like those promoted by IBM are providing energy and water solutions that are efficient and environmentally responsible."
"NYSERDA has a longstanding partnership with IBM. Together, we have invested over $15 Million for energy efficiency improvements to IBM's New York facilities," said Francis J. Murray Jr., President and CEO of the New York State Energy and Development Authority. "We are proud to continue that partnership with IBM and the Green Sigma Coalition as it designs effective energy efficiency and carbon reduction strategies for New York's manufacturers, data centers and other businesses. As we develop statewide energy strategies, we see the problems and bottlenecks created by stand-alone solutions and disparate systems that cannot share information. We applaud IBM's approach of sharing expertise and technology through industry collaboration with IBM's Green Sigma Coalition and other public/private partnerships. The coalition's goal of providing customers with a unified view of their energy, water, waste and greenhouse gas emissions to enable overall efficiency and reduce environmental impact represents a significant advancement in the market."
New Research Innovations for Cooler, Greener Data Centers and Next Generation Electric Energy Storage
The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH), and IBM today announced plans to build a first-of-a-kind water-cooled supercomputer that will repurpose excess heat for the university buildings. The innovative system, named "Aquasar", is expected to decrease the carbon footprint of the Institute by up to 85 percent, which is equivalent to 30 tons of CO2 per year, compared to a similar system using today's cooling technologies*.
With an innovative water-cooling system and direct heat reuse, the new "Aquasar" supercomputer, which will be located at the ETH and is planned to start operation in 2010, is expected to reduce overall energy consumption by up to 40 percent. The system is based on long-term joint research of ETH and IBM scientists in the field of chip-level cooling as well as on a concept for "water-cooled data centers with direct energy re-use" invented by scientists at IBM's Zurich Lab.
The water-cooled supercomputer will consist of two IBM BladeCenter® servers with 22 Cell blades and 6 Intel® blades with Nehalem processor and will have a peak performance of about 10 Teraflops.
Since IBM Research first deployed Measurement and Management Technologies (MMT) in 2007, IBM has completed measurement of approximately 1.4 million square feet of client data centers worldwide. This work has uncovered 38 million kWh of potential saving for IBM clients, the majority of which is achievable with little or no capital expense investment.
Recently, this tool was put to the test in conjunction with Southern California Edison (SCE) to address power and thermal management.
"Through a pilot project using this advanced technology from IBM Research, we were able help one of our large commercial customers reduce power consumption for its data center cooling by 10 percent," said Lynda Ziegler, SCE senior vice president, Customer Service. "As one of the nation's leading utilities for demand response and energy efficiency programs, we are always interested in tools and partnerships that help address energy and environmental issues."
Today, IBM also announced the release of a new real-time version MMT 1.5 that extends the previous point in time measurements to now include continuous and dynamic monitoring of thermal efficiency.
IBM Research also unveiled a new long-term research initiative to spur the creation of next-generation rechargeable batteries capable of storing 10 times more energy than today's most powerful Lithium-ion batteries. Eventually, this technology could power smarter energy grids, support widespread use of electric cars, and more.
Leveraging expertise in materials science, nanotechnology, green chemistry and supercomputing, scientists at IBM Research's Almaden lab in San Jose, California, are undertaking a multi-year research initiative around a grid-scale, efficient, affordable electrical energy storage network. The team plans to explore rechargeable Lithium/Air systems, which have the greatest energy density of all practical battery systems and are inherently safer than traditional Lithium/ion systems.
Worldwide Clients Embrace Energy Efficient Designs from IBM
IBM reported it has completed its 100th scaleable, modular data center (SMDC) to support the growing technology requirements of the world's businesses and governments. IBM installed the 100th center on behalf of Columbia County, Georgia, and its agencies and citizens. Over the past two years, Columbia County had experienced outages due to inadequate power and cooling systems, highlighting the need to upgrade its existing data center infrastructure. In addition, the county's population has grown 26 percent since 2000, increasing the demand for citizen services that are available 24 hours a day via the Web.
Following 2007 assessment of Columbia County's existing IT infrastructure and its projected capacity requirements, IBM designed and implemented a modular architecture that enables the county to reduce power consumption and related energy costs, monitor power and cooling efficiencies and accommodate future growth. Located in Evans, Georgia, the renovated data center also provides increased redundancy -- or availability -- to eliminate outages and to improve the county's delivery of services via Web applications.
"The county's population growth has led to a steady increase in the use of government services and systems, which required us to strengthen the county's IT infrastructure to meet future demand," said Lewis Foster, IT Manager for Columbia County. "Working closely with IBM, we've been able to double the county's IT capacity with virtually no increase in our energy footprint, thereby improving our efficiency and advancing our efforts to employ greener solutions."
IBM has been instrumental in helping TD Bank Financial Group (TDBFG) improve the power utilization (PUE) of its prime data center in Scarborough, Ontario. Additionally, TDBFG is relying on IBM expertise in building its new facility. IBM data center experts are playing a leadership role in the program management as well as providing advice in achieving Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold certification and an efficiency power utilization rating of 1.6.
"The availability of this service from an industry leader such as IBM is a smart complement to our energy reduction aspirations for our day to day operations. It also supports our goal of ensuring our Canadian operations are carbon neutral in 2010," said Karen Clarke-Whistler, Chief Environment Officer, TDBFG. "The study allowed us to refine our PUE assessment and to list and prioritize a number of improvement opportunities. These items are now being worked on in order to improve the rating of our data center."
TDBFG is also working with IBM to develop a mobility strategy covering all the technology, logistics, human resources and business issues associated with employees working remotely. This would allow TDBFG to reduce the building space it occupies, significantly reducing GHG emissions associated with office activities.
Recology, the United States' leading waste management company, IBM conducted the design, construction and relocation of the data center from San Francisco to a more efficient and flexible infrastructure that allows for growth and the deployment of new technologies in Recology's Sacramento site. As a result, IBM helped Recology reduce annual power costs, while enabling Recology to effectively meet technology requirements of its expanding business, which serves more than 600,000 residential and 60,000 commercial customers. In addition, the solution delivers high IT availability, higher employee productivity and easier access to Recology's data and information.
"IBM engaged with us from the very beginning to understand our critical business needs and design appropriate solutions," said Michael McLaughlin, director of information technology for Recology. "IBM's unmatched expertise to design, build, and upgrade a number of technologies in a four month time frame will certainly support our dynamic growth plans effectively. It was truly a pleasure to work with IBM throughout this project."
New Capabilities for Measuring and Managing Energy Usage and Costs
Following of the relocation of one of its data centers in the greater Cincinnati, OH area, The Kroger Co. wanted to determine the amount of electricity saved as a result of the move and consolidation. IBM played a major role in the design and placement of computer equipment within the new data center in order to maximize cooling and minimize power consumption. Kroger turned to IBM and Neuwing Energy Ventures for their expertise in documenting and validating energy savings derived through this relocation. All three entities worked together to measure and verify energy savings by adhering to regulatory and voluntary standards for Energy Efficiency Certificates (EECs). Kroger expects Neuwing to issue Energy Efficiency Certificates this summer that confirm the substantial energy savings Kroger achieved through this project. Each Energy Efficiency Certificate earned is a unique and traceable commodity that verifies the specific amount of megawatt hours saved.
In addition, Kroger is teaming with IBM on an energy management pilot designed to improve visibility and control of ongoing energy consumption of its IT and facilities infrastructure. The solution, which includes IBM Tivoli Monitoring for Energy Management, will be deployed at a data center in Greater Cincinnati to measure and benchmark energy and thermal metrics at the facility. Through this pilot, Kroger plans to extend energy management best practices to other areas of operation. Kroger cites the ability to leverage its existing investment in IBM hardware and software solutions, and the breadth of IBM's partner ecosystem as the key reasons it selected IBM for the pilot.
Jim Scott, Kroger's Chief Technology Officer, said, "Partnering with IBM allows us to explore how many of our existing hardware and middleware solutions can be enhanced to help us achieve our corporate sustainability goals. IBM's commitment to developing a robust partner ecosystem reinforces our belief that IBM is the right partner to help us measure and manage energy usage and costs across our entire infrastructure."
Today, IBM announced that IBM and Cisco have integrated IBM Tivoli Monitoring for Energy Management and Cisco EnergyWise energy management solution. The new combined solution broadens the range of power consumption information and energy optimization policies that can be managed by IBM Energy Management solutions to help organizations discover, optimize, and report energy usage within their data center and business infrastructure.
IBM and Honeywell will also integrate Tivoli Monitoring for Energy Management with Honeywell's EBI and Tridium offerings.
IBM announced the availability of enhanced capabilities in its Tivoli Energy Management solution. IBM Tivoli Monitoring for Energy Management v6.2.1 will be available at the end of June 2009. This release enhances the integration between IBM Tivoli Monitoring for Energy Management and APC by Schneider Electric's InfraStructure®Central Management Platform Suite, Johnson Controls' Metasys, and other partner's offerings to significantly extend the base of chillers, CRACs, generators, UPSs and PDUs that can be monitored and managed with the IBM solutions. Numerous clients are actively exploring the value that is delivered by the IBM Tivoli software integration with partners such as Johnson Controls and APC.
Today, IBM unveiled the new IBM Maximo Asset Management for Energy Optimization. This product will be available on August 14. IBM Maximo Asset Management for Energy Optimization leverages data from IBM Tivoli Monitoring for Energy Management to provide real time visualizations of power, temperature, humidity etc on top of physical layouts of datacenters and other buildings. The visualizations can be utilized to make decisions on physical layouts, HVAC optimizations and to automate the creation of work orders or service requests to implement changes for efficient operations.
New Approaches for Managing Waste Water
IBM is collaborating with the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) to help manage the city's 1,000 mile-long combined sewer system and three treatment facilities, which helps reduce pollution in the San Francisco Bay and Pacific Ocean.
The SFPUC treats an average of 80-90 million gallons of wastewater during dry weather and during wet weather a peak of up to 370 million gallons of combined wastewater and storm runoff.
The SFPUC uses IBM Maximo Asset Management software to provide greater visibility into its maintenance operations and physical infrastructure. The software integrates with the city's 311 and 28-CLEAN Customer Service systems. Both are dispatch centers that handle non-emergency problems, such as potholes, abandoned vehicles and sewer problems such as odors, loose manhole covers and overflowing storm drains.
"Using the IBM Maximo Asset Management software, problems are often solved within 24 hours," said Tommy Moala, Assistant General Manager, SFPUC Wastewater Enterprise. "But the real value of the IBM software is the information it gathers so that we can improve the reduction of water pollution. For example, with some work order histories generated from the IBM software, we can see that we've rebuilt a pump, say, 10 times -- maybe it's time to replace it. The software also helps us to reduce the cost of managing the system down to the component level."
The SFPUC infrastructure includes wastewater treatment machinery, basins and piping including huge capital investments such as large-capacity lift pumps, dewatering centrifuges, belt presses, engine generators and a complex series of huge collection boxes--large basins strategically located throughout the city that capture storm water.
Today's announcements are part of a two-fold approach by IBM to make its existing products and processes more efficient for both the environment and for business, while also developing new innovations that can accelerate the adoption of products and services that have lesser environmental impact.