How HVAC systems contribute to power quality issues in data centers

Data centers serve as the backbone of modern society. They house the servers that keep the digital world running, from the websites we visit to the applications we use and the cloud services that store our data. But while these facilities are indispensable, they’re also energy-intensive, especially their Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems.

What many don’t realize is that the HVAC systems used in data centers not only consume a lot of energy but are also a significant source of power quality issues such as harmonic distortions. This blog aims to shed light on the challenges faced by data centers concerning power quality and how Merus Power offers solutions such as Merus® A2 -Active Harmonic Filter that can help address these issues effectively.

The role of HVAC systems in data centers

A large part of a data center’s energy consumption goes into cooling and ventilation to maintain optimal operating conditions for servers and other equipment. The key components of HVAC systems—chillers, cooling compressors, pumps, and fans—are typically powered by Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs). VFDs provide the ability to modulate the speed and torque of motors, thereby making HVAC systems more energy-efficient.

The power quality issue: current harmonic distortions

Unfortunately, the use of VFDs and other electronic components in HVAC systems can result in current harmonic distortions. These distortions are unwanted currents and voltages that can compromise the integrity of electrical systems. A network affected by high levels of harmonics can experience various issues, including:

  • Overheating of equipment, reducing their lifespan
  • Interference with other devices affecting their performance
  • Costly downtime and data losses
  • Increased energy consumption and associated costs

And the consequences for data centers?

Data centers are uniquely vulnerable to the consequences of poor power quality. Given the vast amounts of information they store and process, even a minor disruption can have a cascading impact, leading to significant financial losses and data breaches. In addition, poor power quality can reduce the overall energy efficiency of the data center, leading to higher operational costs and a larger carbon footprint.

How can Merus Power help?

At Merus Power, we specialize in offering innovative technological solutions tailored to address the challenges posed by power quality disturbances in data centers. Merus® A2 -Active Harmonic Filter is the superior choice to mitigate harmonic distortions and other disturbances originating from HVAC systems, which in turn boosts overall energy efficiency.

By targeting the energy consumption of HVAC systems, we aim to fulfill several core objectives:

  • Improve power quality: As we mitigate harmonic distortions and other power quality issues, data centers can expect to see a marked improvement in the reliability and performance of their electrical systems.
  • Increase energy efficiency: By optimizing HVAC systems, we can reduce their energy consumption, thus reducing the environmental impact and operational costs of data centers.
  • Minimize downtime and data losses: By stabilizing the power network, our solutions can help avoid costly downtimes and the risk of data loss, making data centers more resilient and reliable.
  • Reduce maintenance costs: Better power quality leads to fewer system failures and malfunctions, ultimately lowering the ongoing costs of maintenance.
  • Elongate the lifetime of sensitive electrical equipment: By improving power quality, we can extend the life expectancy of sensitive electrical equipment, offering further long-term cost savings.
  • Minimize environmental impact: Our solutions significantly reduce energy usage, thus helping data centers lower their carbon footprint and contribute to environmental sustainability.

Merus Power, a trusted partner with years of experience

Merus Power is a Finnish technology company with a profound local and global presence and a strong industrial order backlog in power quality solutions. Over the years, we have delivered our innovative solutions to over 70 countries around the world to various customers and successfully mitigated all sorts of power quality issues. With a customer-oriented approach, we design and tailor the best possible solutions for our customers using our cost-effective and top-quality scalable Merus® Technology. We have over 15 years of experience in power quality and engineering and a deep passion for technology.

Merus Power has recently signed two agreements to deliver Merus® A2-Active Harmonic Filters to data centers. Several dozen active harmonic filters are going to North America. This delivery is part of a framework agreement, according to which we will supply the customer with a total of hundreds of active filters over the next two years. Also, with the help of one of our partners, we have signed our largest single transaction of Merus® A2-Active Harmonic Filters in the history of Merus Power. These Active Filters will be delivered to a data center in Europe.

These and other smaller contracts made to the data center sector are very promising and show that our products are a good solution to the sector’s needs.  

Join us in creating a more energy-efficient and sustainable future! Let’s make the world of data centers more reliable, consistent, and efficient!

Riku Kalliomaa

Head of Sales,
Regions & Channels

+358 50 3323 020

Mikko Zavertkin

Sales Manager,
Key Accounts & OEMs

+358 40 5908 858
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