The developers and operators of today’s new-generation data centres make major demands on their power network infrastructure. Downtime due to loss of power simply cannot be contemplated, so operators insist on total reliability and availability.
ABB has responded by developing a unique comprehensive approach that covers every need from the incoming supply through to the server racks. This includes all the AC and DC systems, automation and services required to deliver reliable and efficient solutions for a diverse range of data centre installations.
The ABB strategy for Data Centres is to provide the technology and services required to build reliable and efficient solutions that meet the client’s requirements.
Rather than dealing with separate suppliers for individual project elements, a data centre developer can work with ABB to meet all its power requirements from a single source. This saves both time and money. It also has the advantage that all ABB equipment is guaranteed to work together seamlessly, ensuring fast-track installation and commissioning.
ABB’s scope of supply goes well beyond grid connection, medium-voltage (MV) and low-voltage (LV) switchboards, power distribution units, protection relays and transformers. It also offers variable speed drives (VSDs), motors and power quality equipment. This all comes with the installation, maintenance and 24/7 service support of a major global organization.
As an Independent Connection Provider (ICP) registered under the Lloyds NERS scheme, ABB can offer a turnkey solution for contestable utility connections at all voltages to include the integration of Air Insulated Switchgear (AIS), Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS) and Hybrid solutions. ABB offers a complete one-stop shop package for the electrical distribution in data centres. ABB can also provide ‘Rapid Build Substations’ that enable customers to have a grid connection in the minimum time.
Medium voltage switchgear
ABB offers the full spectrum of both AIS and GIS switchgear. With the growth in size of data centres the full load current and fault levels can increase dramatically. ABB has the product range to cater for these and all data centre applications.
An important element in ABB’s range is the UniGear 500 R Fixed Circuit Breaker panel, which is currently the most compact air-insulated MV switchboard on the market. A further advantage of the UniGear 500 R is that it coordinates perfectly with the well-proven UniGear ZS1 portfolio. So, for example, it is possible to specify on the same busbar: a UniGear with withdrawable incomer; fixed circuit breaker outgoing; and additional starter switchgear.
Relion range of relays
ABB has developed its Relion family of IEDs (intelligent electronic devices) to unleash the full potential of the IEC 61850 standard for communication, Power monitoring and interoperability of substation automation equipment. This new family includes the Relion 615 relay that provides absolutely selective protection, making it ideally suited to data centre protection and control applications.
DC power leads the way for data centre energy efficiency
Data centres consume around 1.5% of the entire world’s electric power. Given the tremendous growth that the industry continues to experience, energy efficiency has become a top priority.
DC (direct current) powered data centres are now being adopted across the industry largely due to their cost advantage in terms of both initial investment (less equipment) and operating costs (greater efficiency). But significant energy efficiency gains can also be made in a variety of areas such as:
• HVAC efficiency – variable speed drives and high efficiency motors can cut HVAC costs by as much as 50%
• Facility efficiency – Electrical power distribution design can reduce energy wasted in the facility by up to 30% compared to conventional designs
• Personnel efficiencies – instrumentation can be configured from a central control area, eliminating the need for engineers to physically adjust the device
• Utility rates and billing – with the right monitoring and control capability, data centre operators can take advantage of time-of-use rates and demand response programs to lower electricity costs
ABB’s data centre portfolio:
• Grid connection solutions at all utility voltage levels
• AC and DC power solutions
• HV, MV and LV switchgear
• Motor control centres (including variable speed drives)
• Power distribution units (PDUs)
• Rack power panels
• Protection relays
• Power quality solutions
• SCADA systems
• Electrical power monitoring and remote supervision
• UPS systems
• Data centre information management (DCIM)
• 24/7 service support