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What is Power Usage Effectiveness?

PUE, or Power Usage Effectiveness, measures how efficiently a data center uses its power. It is calculated by dividing the total amount of power used by the data center (including power used by the IT equipment, cooling systems, lighting, etc.) by the power used by the IT equipment (computers, servers, networking gear, etc.)

A lower PUE indicates that a data center is using its power more efficiently, as less of the power is being used for things like cooling and lighting and more are being used for actual computing.

For example, if a data center has a PUE of 2.0, it means that for every watt of power used by the IT equipment, an additional watt of power is being used for other purposes (such as cooling, lighting, etc.).

A PUE of 1.0 would indicate that the data center is using all of its power for IT equipment, and is therefore the most efficient.

How can data centers improve PUE?

What are the benefits of having a low PUE?

What are the limitations of PUE?

  1. PUE only measures the efficiency of the power infrastructure, and not the overall efficiency of the data center: PUE does not take into account other factors that can affect the efficiency of a data center, such as the efficiency of the IT equipment or the overall design of the facility.

  2. PUE does not account for the source of the power being used: PUE does not consider the environmental impact of the power source being used to power the data center. For example, a data center powered by renewable energy sources may have a higher PUE than one powered by fossil fuels, but the renewable energy data center may have a lower overall environmental impact.

  3. PUE may not accurately reflect the actual power usage of a data center: PUE is based on measurements and estimates, and may not accurately reflect the actual power usage of a data center.

  4. PUE may not be representative of all data centers: PUE is based on averages and may not accurately represent the specific characteristics of an individual data center.

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