​A New Power Source for Data Centers?

​A New Power Source for Data Centers?

May 13th 2022

As data center operators are seeking to cost-effectively power their data centers with alternatives to batteries, another innovation - the lithium ion (li-ion) battery – is starting to rise as an option. The newest generation of these batteries have become more powerful, reliable, cost effective and safer.

As batteries have served as the primary backup power source, more data center operators are looking to the li-ion battery as a primary source of power as well.

Batteries’ interconnected parts can erode over time and affect its performance. For that reason, the battery health must be continuously monitored to ensure they can be replaced before they fail. As such, operators need options other than Valve-Regulated Lead-Acid (VRLA) batteries.

Li-ion battery manufacturers are starting to produce batteries specifically for data centers that had been relying on VRLA batteries.

The advantages to the new battery systems are:

  • Lower cost. While li-ion batteries are more expensive at first, they it make up in overall operational costs over time. Organizations can save 30 to 50% because of improved life span and efficiency.
  • Longer life. A li-ion battery lasts an average of 10 years longer than VRLA batteries
  • Lower risk. Since there is less battery refreshes, there is less opportunity for loss of power during its life
  • Smaller footprint. Li-ion batteries weight 60-70% less than a VRLA battery. They are also 40-60% smaller, giving more floor space to data centers to improve operation capacity.
  • Faster recharge. VRLA batteries can take between 10 to 12 hours to recharge. Li-ion batteries take an average of two hours.
  • Costs less to cool. Higher temperatures do not pose a problem for the li-ion battery, as they are designed to safely operate at higher temperatures with much less degradation than VRLA.

As data centers begin this transition, they are doing so cautiously to ensure safety. If you are considering making the transition to li-ion batteries, GAW Technology recommends working with reputable manufacturers to implement a plan suitable for your center.

As always, GAW Technology is a leading expert in data center racks. If you need additional insight about how we can help with this transition, contact GAW today. 

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