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Save electricity, save money

The idea for the 80 PLUS program was first presented five years ago, and it has been readily embraced by OEMs, consumers, institutions, and businesses as an easy way to reduce power consumption and save money. The certification program identifies computer Power Supply Units (PSUs) that achieve at least 80% efficiency at three specified loads (20%, 50% and 100%) of the maximum rated power of the PSU.

The program really took off when the US Environmental Protection Agency required 80 PLUS certified PSUs for their Energy Star labeling program in 2007. The latest version of Energy Star introduced this year requires Bronze level PSUs as a minimum.

As a result, research and development of energy efficient PSUs has taken off in the last few years, with steadily increasing efficiency. This is of particular importance for the datacenters on which the Internet depends. Corporations spend billions on electricity and cooling for datacenters, which means even a single percentage point increase in efficiency would save milions. Component reliability also increases due to the reduction in heat.

A new Platinum certification level is being introduced, specifically targeting 230V internal power supplies in datacenter servers. These PSUs must be at least 90, 94 and 91 percent efficient at 20, 50 and 100 percent of rated load, and provide a Power Factor Correction of .95 or greater.

HP is the first to introduce these new high efficiency power supplies. No doubt consumer versions will be coming along next year.

“Customers are looking for the highest level of energy efficiency in products to reduce their overall business costs and their impact on the environment,” said McLeod Glass, the Group Manager for Industry Standard Servers at HP.
 
As the first server manufacturer to partner with 80 PLUS on the new Platinum-level power supplies that deliver 94% power efficiency from the outlet to the server, HP is enabling its customers to optimize power usage and reduce energy costs.”


Fraction of Rated Load

20%

50%

100%

80 PLUS

80%

80%

80%

80 PLUS Bronze

82%

85%

82%

80 PLUS Silver

85%

88%

85%

80 PLUS Gold

87%

90%

87%

80 PLUS Platinum 90% 94% 91%



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90 PLUS
By ckmac97 on 12/9/2009 12:24:11 PM , Rating: 5
Maybe the certification name should be changed to 90 PLUS. Consumers won't need a chart to determine the difference between Platinum/Gold/Silver/Bronze ...




RE: 90 PLUS
By Spoelie on 12/9/2009 12:33:39 PM , Rating: 5
indeed, change it to
80+
82+
85+
87+
90+
certification


RE: 90 PLUS
By Kurz on 12/9/09, Rating: -1
RE: 90 PLUS
By piroroadkill on 12/9/2009 1:08:31 PM , Rating: 5
Too complicated? What an utter crock.

It would simpler than the current system.


RE: 90 PLUS
By Kurz on 12/9/09, Rating: -1
RE: 90 PLUS
By ImSpartacus on 12/9/2009 2:39:08 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, there are some numbers OEMs don't like giving out. A nice broad statement like "all our PSUs are 80 PLUS certified" sounds good to the customer.


RE: 90 PLUS
By quiksilvr on 12/9/2009 4:28:11 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, its kind of hard to read sarcasm without the /sarcasm jotted in or if you said "its too COMPLICATED..."


RE: 90 PLUS
By Kurz on 12/9/09, Rating: 0
RE: 90 PLUS
By hyvonen on 12/10/2009 3:55:39 PM , Rating: 1
Almost perfect. But I want to see the efficiencies at certain power levels - not at certain percentages of the max.

I'm tired of hearing about 1000W 90%-efficient (at 50% of max power level) PSUs, when most PCs consume less than 100W when idling.

I want to see what the efficiency is at 50W, 100W and 200W. I'm tired of trying to guess what the efficiency is at 10% of the max.


RE: 90 PLUS
By Yawgm0th on 12/9/2009 12:46:17 PM , Rating: 3
Stop being this way. I'll have none of you and your logic. Reason be gone!


RE: 90 PLUS
By Spivonious on 12/9/2009 12:57:27 PM , Rating: 2
I totally agree.

I also think it's fantastic that we can get power supplies that are 94% efficient. Great for computers that are always on.


RE: 90 PLUS
By lagitup on 12/9/09, Rating: -1
RE: 90 PLUS
By Oregonian2 on 12/9/2009 7:18:57 PM , Rating: 5
I'd just as soon see enviro-friendly'ness being approached from all angles possible/practical simultaneously rather than focusing on single solutions that will save everything.


RE: 90 PLUS
By kkshoe1210 on 12/9/09, Rating: -1
RE: 90 PLUS
By aqaq55 on 12/15/09, Rating: 0
DC
By ChrisHF on 12/9/2009 1:02:52 PM , Rating: 2
Can someone explain to me why each computer in a data center has it's own AC->DC converting power supply? Wouldn't it be more efficient to have a single power supply per rack, for example?

Also, wouldn't it be more efficient for any computer with a UPS to have the UPS supply DC direct to the computer instead of DC which gets converted to AC for the computer's PS (which converts it back to DC)? I know there are multiple DC voltage levels that come out of a PS, but still.




RE: DC
By Kurz on 12/9/2009 1:15:19 PM , Rating: 4
Lets say you want to save on energy throughout the day.
You only need X amount of computers at night. But you need XX amount during the day.

Its easier to have a individual computer turn off.
Plus its for reducdency issues, lets say one of your PSU Computer dies. Easy to swap that comptuer the effect is less. Entire rack dies... Your talking about more downtime and more computers off line for that time frame.


RE: DC
By jtemplin on 12/12/2009 1:17:31 PM , Rating: 2
Google actually has a battery backing up each power supply for each blade, which surprised even experts in the IT world as apparently most UPS are implemented as you suggest power supplies might (one for all) As people have said, redundancy is essential. Data integrity is of utmost importance.

Linky:
http://arstechnica.com/hardware/news/2009/04/the-b...


RE: DC
By Mr Perfect on 12/9/2009 1:49:39 PM , Rating: 4
Partly for reliability. The IT crowd love redundancy. Any server in a datacenter will have at least two powersupplies, each of which is capable of running the server all by itself. That way if one PSU goes down, the server never drops. There's no way a datacenter administrator would put every one of their servers on one or two main PSUs.


RE: DC
By namechamps on 12/9/2009 7:14:05 PM , Rating: 2
Imagine a rack with 3 powers supplies. 2 supplies running at 50% load so either can step up as a hot spare plus a third power supply as a cold spare.

Now the powersupply is powerful enough to power the rack and has multiple DC outputs for each server.


RE: DC
By Zok on 12/9/2009 3:03:57 PM , Rating: 3
This is already being done. All of the major data center companies produce DC power supplies - although AC is still standard.

Some general info: http://hightech.lbl.gov/dc-powering/


RE: DC
By rcsinfo on 12/9/2009 4:51:20 PM , Rating: 2
The shared power supply setup is one of the selling points of blade servers. The HP blade centers we use hold 16 server blades and 6 hotswap power supplies in a 10U chassis. Each power supply is 2400W. On the setup I am working on now, there are 4 power supplies, but the system only needs two at full load. This gives us full redundancy (n+n) on our power.

You can get 48V power supplies for HP blade centers, most telecom data centers have 48V readily available. The problem is each 48V power supply is about $1500 vs $250 for the single phase AC power supply.

Also I have read about Google experimenting with a battery installed in each power supply making a hybrid UPS/power supply. I saw some articles earlier this year claiming over 99% UPS efficiency at their data center. Facebook just announced something similar. I haven't seen this available for commodity servers yet, but if Google's claims are true its probably around the corner.


RE: DC
By bertomatic on 12/9/2009 5:23:23 PM , Rating: 2
My last data-center was all DC, my current one is AC. On that last one, all our servers and switches had DC power supplies. There were a few occasions where a special piece of equipment was not available with a DC power supply so that rack had an inverter in it to convert the DC back to AC.


...and of course the next level will be...
By CList on 12/9/2009 12:58:09 PM , Rating: 5
80 PLUS Dwarven Mithril!




RE: ...and of course the next level will be...
By Fenixgoon on 12/9/2009 2:16:37 PM , Rating: 1
80 PLUS UNOBTANIUM

what now???


RE: ...and of course the next level will be...
By Slyne on 12/9/2009 2:41:08 PM , Rating: 5
That one is for 99% 101% 99%


RE: ...and of course the next level will be...
By ImSpartacus on 12/9/09, Rating: -1
RE: ...and of course the next level will be...
By smackababy on 12/9/2009 2:47:18 PM , Rating: 3
A power supply that actually supplies power! Converts 100w into 120w!


By AnnihilatorX on 12/9/2009 3:22:45 PM , Rating: 2
No, mine is -20% efficient
Oh, wait until I bring in the imaginary numbers


RE: ...and of course the next level will be...
By rollakid on 12/10/2009 7:22:41 PM , Rating: 2
If less than 100% efficiency means it'll generate heat, then does over 100% means it will chill things around it?

I'm waiting for 150% efficiency PSU and I want the fan to spin backwards pulling air into the box, and make a mini-fridge.

Average 32C/90F temperature during morning all year round here, need all the help I can get :P


By Kurz on 12/10/2009 10:40:21 PM , Rating: 2
Well... if you really want to know.
I've read up on John Searl inventor his Over unity device claimed it went sub zero.

I guess whenever someone somehow develops over unity.
It'll chill your house during the summer and produce Electricity.

(I am an open minded individual that needs solid proof of over unity, I am not a crackpot. Just think for everything that is possible in this universe why not Over unity)


Cost???
By RaistlinZ on 12/9/2009 1:12:09 PM , Rating: 2
I wonder how pricey these things will be. A 750W Platinum PSU sounds pretty juicy though. What will be next after Platinum? Palladium? 99%-99%-99% efficiency? =D




RE: Cost???
By wwwcd on 12/9/2009 1:48:44 PM , Rating: 2
Palladium ...no, - Plutonium! Costing a full budget of the goverment?! :)


Annoucements are fine BUT
By createcoms on 12/9/2009 9:48:19 PM , Rating: 2
I'm a big fan of the 80 plus program - since my computer runs 24/7. However even the GOLD ones have been scarce on the ground....so note to the companies, I'm ready to buy the platinum doo-hickey but actually distribute it properly mmkay? I shouldn't have to hunt around for them...




RE: Annoucements are fine BUT
By atlmann10 on 12/10/2009 3:12:12 PM , Rating: 2
Creatcoms why take all the fun out of the treasure hunt they like to make us hunt. I just bought one of the new 5850 gpu's it should be delivered in the next hour. However I have been watching them and the 5870's since there release. I got an XFX for the double warranty (so I can sell it if I want with warranty transfer automatically), plus it is lifetime. The point is the 5870 is more available to a small degree. However; in general both cards and getting the exact brand specs you want are usually sold out everywhere. If you go to one of the multi pp sites like pricegrabber the site does not even have any idea what your looking for. So it will give you anything with a somewhat similar number or maybe one choice from one distro.


By Kurz on 12/11/2009 12:10:40 AM , Rating: 2
Sure... I think we should let free market decide this one.


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