Towards Holistic Energy Management of IT Systems: From the Device to the Data Center Level

Wednesday, February 06, 2013
6:00 PM
Free and open to the public

The combination of rapidly increasing energy use of information technology (IT) equipment, which is triggered by exploding IT demands, drastically surging energy costs and limited energy supplies, has made IT energy efficiency a central concern from both a cost and sustainability perspective. Although at a first glance IT energy and thermal management appears to be a very basic problem, especially the generation and eventual disposal of heat is a multi-dimenisonal problem - multiple levels in the technology stack from the chip to the data center level produce heat at various length and time scales, and each level’s heat generation has a unique impact on the power consumption of the total IT ecosystem. In addition, pronounced, time-dependent hotspots (or regions of high power density) at each of those levels complicate the challenge. In this presentation we review current technology trends. Then discuss a series of investigations, which aim at understanding holistically thermal and energy management throughout the IT stack. The studies range from exploratory work on sub-diffusion heat conduction effects in nanoscale silicon devices, characterizing power density distributions of high performance microprocessors to the development of new energy and thermal modeling concepts of entire data centers

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Hendrik Hamann

Manager, Physical Analytics
Thomas J. Watson Research Center