Technology Strategy Board Competition Win (May 2013)
Press Release : Celsius temperature monitoring system a winner
LONDON - 1 May 2013 - An Alquist-led consortium including Verizon and Schneider Electric has been awarded almost £1 million UK government funding to assist UK data centres reduce their carbon footprint.
Cambridge-based start-up Alquist has won almost £1 million government funding to assist UK data centre operators reduce their carbon footprint. Alquist will help its consortium members, including Verizon and Schneider Electric, achieve significant CO2 reductions through integrating Alquist’s Celsius temperature monitoring system in two refurbishment projects.
The funding award, from the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC), follows the consortium’s success in the “Invest in Innovative Refurbishment” DECC programme, which is managed under the SBRI framework by the Technology Strategy Board. From 50 applications, the consortium’s bid was one of only five awarded delivery contracts.
Celsius uses advanced laser technology and fibre-optics to create high definition temperature maps of data centre server racks and power transmission equipment. This new real-time information will enable data centre staff to optimise airflow and air conditioning settings pro-actively. Through improved energy usage, mid-size data centres can target 10-30% reduction in electricity bills, and reduce carbon emissions by up to 2,000 tonnes per annum.
Alquist’s innovative temperature monitoring technology targets a high-growth market where the UK, with over £3bn invested in 2011, is the world’s third largest player. Data centres are forecast to consume 6% of UK electricity by 2020, and UK suppliers lead globally in developing Green Data Centre solutions. Government funding will help refine the Celsius system and provide hard evidence of actual savings at two London demonstrator sites owned and operated by consortium members.
Alquist founder Andrew Jones said, “Data centre managers have very limited visibility of temperature fluctuation across their data halls. Celsius offers thousands of real-time sensing points. This new visibility enables managers to cool equipment far more efficiently, and make significant energy savings. We are delighted that DECC is investing in an area with huge potential for CO2 reduction.”
Verizon’s Natalie Hooper, the company’s technical facilities lead in Europe, said "Operating cooling systems efficiently whilst avoiding hotspots is one of the key challenges faced by data centre operators. Celsius provides a simple, cost-effective way of gathering necessary temperature information in order to proactively manage equipment more effectively. Verizon is aggressively taking steps to reduce its energy consumption worldwide."
Schneider Electric Director of Business Development Andy Roberts said, “Our customers want to optimise energy usage, and use available power for powering IT equipment rather than for cooling. Schneider Electric’s StruxureWare management suite, together with Celsius’ powerful monitoring capability, can help them achieve this.”
NOTES FOR EDITORS
About Alquist Ltd
Alquist, a Cambridge-based start up, has pioneered development of the Celsius temperature monitoring system for data centres. Specially adapted lasers convert fibre-optic cables into high precision temperature sensors, detecting minute real time changes every metre along their length. Data centre managers use the resulting high definition heat maps to adjust cooling systems and optimise operating temperatures within agreed safe limits. Alquist’s Celsius product suite has received major industry awards from Data Centre Dynamics; the Chartered Institute for IT, and Comms Expo. Celsius technology is already used in the oil & gas and power transmission sectors worldwide. Alquist is a member of IdeaSpace, a hub for early stage innovation which is located at the Hauser Forum, University of Cambridge.
About Verizon Communications Inc
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 98 million retail customers. Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America’s most advanced fibre-optic network, and delivers integrated business solutions to customers in more than 150 countries, including all of the Fortune 500. A Dow 30 company with $116 billion in 2012 revenues, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of more than 183,400. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.
About Schneider Electric
As a global specialist in energy management with operations in more than 100 countries, Schneider Electric offers integrated solutions across multiple market segments, including leadership positions in Utilities & Infrastructures, Industries & Machine Manufacturers, Non-residential Buildings, Data Centres & Networks and in Residential.
Focused on making energy safe, reliable, efficient, productive and green, the Group’s 130,000 plus employees achieved sales of 22.4 billion euros in 2011, through an active commitment to help individuals and organisations make the most of their energy.
About the Department for Energy and Climate Change
More information about the Department for Energy and Climate Change can be found on the website www.gov.uk/decc
About the Technology Strategy Board
The Technology Strategy Board is the UK’s innovation agency. Its goal is to accelerate economic growth by stimulating and supporting business-led innovation. Sponsored by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Technology Strategy Board brings together business, research and the public sector, supporting and accelerating the development of innovative products and services to meet market needs, tackle major societal challenges and help build the future economy. For more information please visit www.innovateuk.org.
The SBRI programme uses the power of government procurement to drive innovation. It provides opportunities for innovative companies to engage with the public sector to solve specific problems. Competitions for new technologies and ideas are run on specific topics and aim to engage a broad range of organisations. SBRI enables the public sector to engage with industry during the early stages of development, supporting projects through the stages of feasibility and prototyping. For more information please visit http://www.innovateuk.org/deliveringinnovation/smallbusinessresearchinitiative.ashx