eBay claims site average PUE of 1.35 for Project Mercury

The Green Grid confirms Phoenix data center’s energy efficiency metrics

25 February 2012 by Yevgeniy Sverdlik - DatacenterDynamics

eBay claims site average PUE of 1.35 for Project Mercury
Inside eBay’s Project Mercury data center in Phoenix, Arizona. Image courtesy of eBay

Energy efficiency of eBay’s new data center in Phoenix, Arizona, called Project Mercury, has been confirmed by The Green Grid, making official the company’s claims about efficiency of a number of cutting-edge design approaches and technologies it used.

The Green Grid has released a case study detailing the design of the facility and showing how the company used the organization’s Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) metric and the Data Center Maturity Model (DCMM) to guide the design process.

Read more about eBay’s Project Mercury in our exclusive, featured in the upcoming issue of DatacenterDynamics FOCUS magazine

Brad Brech, an IBM representative on The Green Grid’s board, said Project Mercury was designed to optimize performance and energy use for eBay’s specific workload profile. At the same time the project met the five-year horizons defined by the DCMM.

“This facility is an example of what is possible by establishing and relying on industry best practices for achieving maximum energy efficiency and low environmental impact in data centers,” Brech said.

eBay’s reported initial efficiency results very much better than the industry average. Project Mercury’s site average PUE was 1.35 during one week in January. The site’s best-case PUE was 1.26.

The data center has three data center modules on the roof: two HP pods and one Dell module. eBay reported the Dell module’s partial PUE of 1.018. The measurement was taken during the same time period as site PUE.

On one of 2011’s hottest days in August 2011, the 20-rack container showed a PUE of 1.046. That was when outside temperature was 115F.

According to The Green Grid, the data center owes its efficiency primarily to its high server density and a hot-water cooling system, which drastically reduces the time it’s required to run mechanical chillers.

eBay commissioned IT hardware optimized for its workloads from its suppliers. This also maximized efficiency of the way data center resources, such as space, power and cooling, were used to meet eBay’s specific workload requirements.

Download The Green Grid’s case study of Project Mercury.

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