22 Sep 2010 -- IBM's new, 60,000 square foot, Leadership Data Center (LDC) in Research Triangle Park (RTP), North Carolina, recently became the company's first LEED Gold certified data center.
LEED (link resides outside of ibm.com) is an internationally recognized green building certification system.
IBM's new data center reduces technology infrastructure costs and complexity for the clients it serves while improving quality and productivity. It also accelerates the deployment of services using only half the energy required of a similar-size facility. In constructing the new data center, the use of recycled materials and the energy characteristics of the space enabled the LDC to become LEED Gold certified.
IBM renovated an existing building on its 4 million square foot RTP campus by reusing 95% of the original building's shell, recycling 90% of the materials from the original building and ensuring that 25% of newly purchased material came from recycled products.
Key energy efficiency aspects of the data center are:
- Smarter data center management: A vast number of sensors, connecting IT equipment with the building infrastructure, provide data that is analyzed to plan future capacity, automatically adjust systems to conserve energy and support maintaining operations in the event of a power loss.
- Free cooling: The LDC uses 50% less energy to operate compared to data centers of similar size by taking advantage of cooler outside temperatures and avoiding the use of high energy consuming chillers. Intelligent systems use sensors to continuously read temperature and relative humidity throughout the data center and dynamically adjust cooling in response to changes in demand.
- Cloud computing capability: Cloud computing allows clients to use only the resources necessary to support their IT operations at any given moment--eliminating the need for up to 70% of the hardware resource that might have been previously needed to perform the same task and dramatically reducing both IT investments as well as infrastructure needed.
- Built for expansion: Due to an innovative modular design method, IBM will be able to rapidly scale capacity to meet demand by quickly adding future space, power and cooling to the data center with no disruption to existing operations while avoiding hardware installation, energy use and operational costs for the period when the space would be "idled."
Other LEED-certified IBM projects include:
- Costa Mesa, CA - Gold Certified
- Foster City, CA - Gold Certified
- Boulder, CO - Silver Certified
- Dulles Station, Herndon, VA - Silver Certified
- Tivoli, Austin, TX - Certified
The following are some of IBM's buildings globally that have achieved LEED equivalent recognition in their country:
- Frankfurt, Germany - Data Centers
- Singapore - High-End Server Manufacturing
- Zurich, Switzerland - Nanotechnology Center