Rackable Systems Granted Patent for DC Power Technology

February 19, 2007 by Jeff Shepard

Rackable Systems, Inc. announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) awarded the company patent number 7,173,821, entitled "Computer rack with power distribution system." This patent awards protection to Rackable Systems for certain aspects of its cabinet, power and server designs, which optimize density, energy efficiency and thermal management in the data center.

The patented designs, released in 2003, leverage step-down power converters and ac-dc power converters – commonly known as rectifiers – to distribute dc power to systems inside a server cabinet. Failover protection may be achieved by replacing a standard ac power supply with a highly reliable dc power card. Additionally, a secondary voltage step-down may be used within each system. This novel method of power distribution may occur inside or outside of the server cabinet, allowing for the flexibility to provide dc power to either a single cabinet or entire row of cabinets populated with systems.

The patent covers 29 claims relating to dc power-based power conversion and distribution. By leveraging this technology, the company claims that data centers will be able to realize power savings and reduce heat output within the systems, helping to reduce IT costs. Rackable Systems claims that its patented dc power technology marks the first of its kind for large-scale data center deployments.

"Our history of technical innovation has enabled us to deliver award-winning data center solutions that provide immediate value to our customers," said Giovanni Coglitore, CTO at Rackable Systems. "Our patented designs not only further our mission to reduce costs and eliminate wasted resources, but also facilitate the smooth, effective management of a successful data center."