As the iron heats up, Big Blue is trying to keep it cool. IBM has introduced "Cool Blue," a datacenter cooling technology that it claims will reduce heat output in computer systems by up to 55 percent while driving energy costs down by as much as 15 percent.
Officially called the IBM eServer Rear Door Heat eXchanger, Cool Blue is filled with sealed tubes that circulate chilled water, removing what IBM claims is up to 50,000 BTU of heat from a full server rack on any brand server. There are no moving or electrical parts and units are mounted with standard fittings and couplings.
This approach, says IBM, frees up valuable floor space that would otherwise be occupied by air conditioning units rather than servers and eases the workload of existing climate control systems. The Heat eXchanger is manufactured to be transported around the floor to provide cooling where it is most necessary.
"IBM has been addressing the cooling needs of customer datacenters for years and the new 'Cool Blue' technology is a giant leap forward in overcoming previously insurmountable air conditioning limitations," said Rod Adkins, vice president of development, IBM Systems and Technology Group.
"As customers try to incorporate more processing power into the same datacenter footprint, this breakthrough technology will help them win the war on heat."
Another frontline IBM server cooling technology is Calibrated Vectored Cooling, which provides systems engineers with a way to control the airflow inside of IBM's servers.
An updated eServer Cluster 1350 system will be outfitted with Cool Blue, but units are also available for purchase separate from the server. The cost added to the Cluster 1350 is dependent on the configuration.
The IBM eServer Heat eXchanger has an estimated retail price of $4,299 USD.