Data center facilities pro

Feb 24 2010   12:23PM GMT

EPA developing Energy Star spec for uninterruptible power supplies (UPSes)

Mark Fontecchio Mark Fontecchio Profile: Mark Fontecchio

The federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is developing an Energy Star specification for uninterruptible power supplies (UPSes), which are widely used in data centers.

The EPA has reached its arms into the data center industry a lot in the past few years, developing an Energy Star spec for servers and in the process of developing one for data center facilities and storage equipment. Now it’s looking at UPSes. Here’s an excerpt from the announcement letter EPA sent out earlier this month on the development:

EPA recently conducted a scoping effort to evaluate UPS products for inclusion in the ENERGY STAR program. EPA reviewed market data and held many discussions with product manufacturers, industry associations, and other parties. As a result of this effort, EPA found the following:

  • UPS products are common throughout the enterprise data center, small office, and home office/entertainment markets, and represent an opportunity for ENERGY STAR to expand upon its energy efficiency experience with power supplies and data center IT equipment.
  • National energy-savings potential compares favorably to that from other ENERGY STAR product categories.
  • Several test standards, including IEC 62040-3, CAN/CSA-C813.1-0, serve the UPS market. There is opportunity for ENERGY STAR to expand upon these established standards in the development of a standard evaluation method for UPS energy efficiency.
  • Efficiency improvements are not likely to have a negative impact on product performance.
  • A labeling program will help consumers identify the most efficient UPS solution for their specific application.

Last week, the EPA posted more online, including a framework document that anyone can comment on by April 2. In a cover memo, it also spelled out a desired timeline:

  • February 16 – EPA distributes Specification Framework Document for review
  • March 24 – Stakeholder meeting to discuss framework
  • April 02 – Comments due on Specification Framework
  • Ongoing – Draft specifications and comment periods
  • 4Q-2010 – Target Specification finalization and effective date

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