Software Defined Power and Artificial Intelligence to Boost Energy Utilization in Datacenters

November 05, 2019 by Paul Shepard

Virtual Power Systems (VPS) announced that its Intelligent Control of Energy (ICE) platform with phase balancing has been fully integrated into the newest power solutions from Artesyn Embedded Power, an Advanced Energy Industries, Inc. company.   This is yet another example of the strategic and interdependent partnership formed as part of the ongoing collaboration between the two companies.

In addition to ongoing technology collaborations, VPS and Artesyn have delivered phase balancing functionality to power shelves compatible with the Open Compute standard. Building on the February 2019 announcement, the power pioneers are committed to ensuring multi-vendor interoperability while driving SDP momentum by improving energy utilization for datacenters of any size or scale.

"Working with forward-thinking and innovative partners like Artesyn enables VPS to validate how quickly SDP can transform datacenter power utilization," said Steve Houck, CEO of Virtual Power Systems. "As the market for open infrastructure evolves, we will be uniquely positioned to drive significant power efficiencies through technology integration, innovation, and AI."

Achieving Exemplary Phase Balancing

Datacenter operators often struggle to achieve the ideal balance of power drawn from each phase of three-phase ac power sources. Dealing with imbalances can lead to line loss, a decrease in power conversion efficiency, increased power consumption and associated thermal output from equipment and cabling. Most important, phase imbalances result in oversizing the ac power distribution network because, in order to support the same load, the capacity of the ac power infrastructure must be based on the power drawn from the highest consuming phase.

VPS' ICE platform leverages AI and machine learning to intelligently optimize phase balancing levels while improving the power draw from the power distribution systems. For example, VPS ICE can control each individual Power Supply Unit (PSU) and addressable Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS) capability within Artesyn's Power Shelf technology to shift load to different power phases without reducing the reliability and redundancy of the shelf. This enables compensation for imbalances introduced by loads elsewhere in the datacenter that are out of balance or caused by a PSU failure.

"Artesyn strives to deliver the most cutting-edge ac-dc power technologies to our customers, and our continuing collaboration with VPS complements our own effort by addressing datacenter challenges such as phase balancing," said Brian Korn, Senior Director, Data Center Solutions, for Artesyn Embedded Power. "Integration of our power conversion solutions with VPS' ICE platform enables quick and easy scaling of this advanced functionality across datacenter racks worldwide."