Southern Cross scores green IBM accolade

Southern Cross scores green IBM accolade

SCCS built and supplied a new datacentre solution for Sustainability Victoria, reducing power consumption by 68 per cent.

Melbourne-based IT services and consulting outfit, Southern Cross Computer Systems (SCCS), has received IBM's Beacon award for Innovation in Green IT datacentre solution.

The award recognised SCCS' design and implementation of a new datacentre for government agency, Sustainability Victoria, using IBM's BladeCentre blade servers.

There were more than 725 nominations for the Beacon awards and each submission went before a judging panel consisting of analysts and IBM executives covering 37 award categories.

SCCS managing director, Mark Kalmus, said the agency was looking at ways to reduce their power consumption and a large percentage of that derived from its computer room. The new datacentre solution resulted in 68 per cent server power reduction and reduced the agency's carbon emissions by 102 tonnes per year. In tow, SCCS also developed an Ecovantage marketing campaign.

"IBM architects and our engineers came up with a design that included racking equipment with cooling systems and implemented some systems management software, which allowed the CPUs go to sleep when they weren't being used, reducing power consumption," he said.

"The solution was quite innovative across a number of areas in the design, implementation and application to their working environment. This was also done in Australia and we tend to be overlooked in the worldwide scheme of things."

Kalmus said a large part of the project involved consolidating the agency's servers through virtualisation, which reduced the amount of space, number of CPUs and the amount of air conditioning required to cool the room. Previously the agency had in excess of 30 servers.

In conjunction with the new datacentre implementation, Sustainability Victoria also replaced their desktop fleet with notebooks, Kalmus said, and consolidated their printers.

"They implemented a number of IT initiatives to help them reduce power consumption," he said. "This fitted in with their goals to go to the market, educate and encourage users to take sustainability as a serious issue, both in the way that organisations design their work space, lighting, recycling approach and so forth."

IBM recently announced it would pump $US1 billion per year into its Big Green project, which includes the solutions Big Blue offers customers and its own internal IT operations.

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