With the concept of green datacenters having seemingly moved from a center stage issue to a checkbox item for customers looking for datacenter and cloud services, it is nice to see a datacenter provider actually put their business where their beliefs are, and develop a datacenter facility that is focused on being green.
Turnkey Internet, a cloud services and datacenter provider located in Albany, NY, has taken being green to heart, with their facility being an excellent example of what can be done when you choose to focus on being a green datacenter services provider.
To start with, their datacenter facility is a repurposed US Post Office building, which certainly qualifies as recycling. Various studies have shown the repurposing an appropriate building into a datacenter can result in both significant cost savings and a much more green approach to building, with some percentage of the existing infrastructure, beyond the building shell, being able to be recycled for use in the datacenter or simply being appropriately recycled.
Second, they've covered their building with solar panels, which according to their CEO, are able to supply 75% of their current 1.5 MW power consumption. They've also enrolled in NY State's "Recharge New York", program, which, upon approval, will deliver them additional power from the Niagara Falls Hydroelectric system, allowing the facility have the potential to be 100% powered by renewable energy resources.
They've also implemented a pod-based solution inside the facility, which uses cold containment pods with detailed energy and cooling management, which they claim use up to a third less energy than traditional cooling processes. The cooling takes advantage of their custom economizers which can utilize environmental cooling as part of their process. This makes the cooler upstate NY climate a major benefit in cooling power savings.
Lastly, Turnkey seems to be one of the first customers of the newest generation of Sea Micro (now AMD) Atom-based server systems that Dell is selling (at least that is willing to talk about it publicly). These servers use large numbers of low-powered Atom CPUs to deliver cloud services in an energy efficient way, when compare to the power use of standard X86 servers in delivering similar services.
Of course, like anything else, it will take the customer reaction to determine if a high-focus on delivering a green datacenter using renewable resources is enough of a sales point to drive business Turnkey's way in a very competitive industry.