Maintenance of power infrastructure is essential to reduce the damage caused by unexpected power outages in the data center. Network room maintenance Power supply and generator maintenance and disaster planning should be part of the routine operation of the data center.
Sudden power failure will paralyze the operation of the data center. Power outages are harmful to IT systems because they can cause data loss, file corruption, and equipment damage. The on-premises data center needs a backup power system that is directly integrated into the power infrastructure to ensure that critical systems remain online.
Data center power infrastructure should support two modes of operation: regular operation and emergency operation. In normal operation mode, the data center is connected to the power lines of one or more utility companies, and some companies may use diesel generators to meet their power needs.
However, diesel generators usually have another important role in the power infrastructure: providing backup power in emergency situations. In an emergency, companies use one or more diesel generators to power the data center and provide energy in the form of alternating current (AC).
The importance of maintaining power in the network room
Data centers usually deploy one or more automatic transfer switches to switch between utility power and backup power. If the utility power is interrupted or fails, the transfer switch sends a start command to the connected standby diesel generator, and then provides electricity when it starts to generate electricity. Once the utility power is restored, the transfer switch will switch to the utility power supply and send a shutdown command to the diesel generator.
The power infrastructure of the data center includes one or more network computer rooms to maintain power. The network room maintenance power supply has two key purposes: to protect IT equipment from the impact of peak voltages, and to provide short-term power in the event of a power failure.
Another common power infrastructure component is the power distribution unit (PDU), which is an advanced power outlet that obtains power from the maintenance power supply in the network room, and then distributes it to the IT system. The power distribution unit (PDU) does not produce power spikes, which is why the power distribution unit (PDU) is usually used with the maintenance power supply of the network room.
Its power regulation and routing are done through switch cabinets or main distribution boards and transformers. This can ensure the normal output of the power supply voltage and current. The equipment configuration depends on the size of the data center, the number and type of IT systems.
to ensure continuous operation
The data center power infrastructure must provide power for other equipment in the data center facility, such as lighting, alarms, sensors, fire monitors, cooling devices, and dehumidifiers. Its power infrastructure must also provide power for IT systems (such as servers, storage devices, and network components) so that they can operate uninterrupted even if there is a power outage.
During normal operation, the power supply targeted at the IT system will continue to operate through the network computer room maintenance power supply. The network room maintains the power supply to ensure that the connected battery is fully charged, and is ready to support emergency operations at any time. The battery can provide enough power to make the IT system run in a short time, depending on the number and type of the battery.
Some network room maintenance power supplies use flywheels or super capacitors instead of batteries. The flywheel uses an accelerating rotor to store kinetic energy that can be converted into electricity. Supercapacitors use static charges to store electrical energy as needed.
The network computer room maintenance power supply is divided into three types: offline, online interactive, and online. If the utility power is interrupted, the maintenance power supply of the network room will be switched to the power supply state, converted to AC power and sent to the PDU. The working principle of online interactive network computer room maintenance is roughly the same, except that it adjusts the equipment when the mains power is supplied to prevent voltage spikes.
Online network computer room maintenance converts AC power to DC power and charges the battery. The remaining power will be adjusted and converted back to AC power for PDU output. Large data centers that run critical workloads often deploy online network computer rooms to maintain power supplies because they can provide the highest level of protection, despite increasing operating costs.
No matter what kind of network room maintenance is used, or how the organization configures backup power, the goal is the same: provide enough time to shut down the IT system or allow the backup generator to start power generation. In an ideal situation, less than one minute after the failure is detected, the backup diesel generator will start, so that the network room maintenance power supply will resume normal operation.
The backup generators in most data centers have enough fuel to run for 24 to 48 hours. The number of backup generators and the total voltage required depend on the specific power requirements of the data center.
The organization must ensure the safe operation of its generators, comply with applicable environmental regulations, and allow administrators to monitor exhaust gases such as carbon monoxide or nitric oxide.
Proactively planned outages
Every data center should have a disaster recovery plan that outlines the steps that should be taken in the event of a power outage and the role each device should play; it is essential to follow this plan during downtime.
This means shutting down the IT system in the prescribed order, ensuring that the backup generators are running and properly ventilated, monitoring the temperature to prevent overheating, and verifying that emergency systems (such as pumping equipment) are operating normally.
Once power is restored, there must be a restoration plan. The IT system should be recalibrated in the prescribed order and tested to confirm that everything is operating as expected. Emergency equipment should be turned off to prepare for the next crisis. Most importantly, participants should maintain proper communication during and after a power outage so that workers affected by the power outage can obtain the latest information on the state of the infrastructure.
Data center power infrastructure also requires regular equipment maintenance and testing. If power is interrupted, improperly maintained network room maintenance power supplies or diesel generators may affect the operation of the data center, which may affect its troubleshooting time.