Innovation has always been at the forefront of how Hetzner delivers value to its customers. But what does innovation mean? How do you measure it? One very tangible measurement of innovation is the PUE of its Samrand Data Centre - and the 2018 results have just come in.
The PUE score is one indicator of how technologically advanced and capable a data centre is. “When we built the Samrand DC in 2013, it was really important for us to find an efficient and sustainable way of managing power consumption while making every effort to reduce its carbon footprint,” says Athena Turner, Hetzner’s brand manager.
PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) is a term specific to the Data Centre Industry and is a widely accepted benchmark to help determine how energy-efficient a data centre is. The highest level of energy efficiency is awarded a PUE score of 1.2, the industry average is 1.7. Hetzner’s DC has reliably scored between 1.17 and 1.25, with 2018 no different. Their latest PUE is 1.21, despite Gauteng’s record-breaking heatwave to contend with in September 2018.
The attention Hetzner places on energy efficiency has a direct cost-saving benefit for its customers. “We make every effort to reduce power usage, and pass on that cost-saving to our customers. Crucially, though, we don’t sacrifice performance for energy efficiency - we have consistently found ways to deliver both, making Samrand a highly efficient data centre,” adds Turner. This efficiency also has a positive environmental impact as it translates into a smaller carbon footprint for the data centre.
By operating a lean data centre, Hetzner gets the most out of its servers and storage while maximising processing power and consolidating floor space. Their custom high-density design, for example, is Hetzner’s solution to efficiently managing data centre floor space. The design, developed in-house, includes an additional 30% more servers in the same space, without any upgrades to existing building infrastructure, allowing the data centre to run in a leaner way while also lowering the maintenance cost per unit. It also allows for the improvement of support services and easier upgrades of product features.
Since opening the Samrand Data Centre five years ago, Hetzner’s focus on innovation and energy efficiency has grown even sharper. “We may have added more customers and more servers, but we’ve kept our PUE score consistently low. Why? Because it benefits our customers - and the environment,” concludes Turner.