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KyotoCooling and CPI Passive Cooling Support Innovative, Sustainable Data Center for State of Montana

September 23, 2011

Helena Capital Building statueForged by a true pioneer spirit, the State of Montana inhabits a place (and time zone) all its own - a place known simply as "Big Sky Country." Yet for all its wide open spaces and natural wonder, Montana's true grit resides in a rich tradition of capitalizing on "golden" opportunities. Case in point? In a city where more millionaires lived (per capita) than any other in the world at the turn of the 20th century, Helena, Montana is now home to a whole new kind of goldmine - that of the first-ever United States data center to use the remarkably efficient, energy recovery wheel, air-to-air heat exchange cooling system known as KyotoCooling® - supported by CPI Passive Cooling® Solutions.

But just how did the State of Montana go from a data center operating at a frigid 45 degrees Fahrenheit just to cool blade servers to a brand new facility reporting PUEs of an astounding 1.08? Let's find out.

In 2007, the Montana State legislature appropriated funds for two new data centers. With top-level goals in mind (reliability, security, and efficiency) and a challenge from the governor - the '20 by 10' initiative calling for energy consumption in state-owned buildings to decrease by 20 percent before the end of 2010 - two groups within the state's department of administration set out on the job - Information Technology Services Division (ITSD) and the Architecture and Engineering Division (A&E).

Because of Montana's unique geographical location, weather patterns and scarce population, the need for a reliable data center was paramount - especially considering the state's citizens, taxpayers and employees depend on the facility to manage everything from payroll to medical info. Likewise, it was imperative to seek solutions that would not only ensure reliability full stop, but do so in a highly cost-conscious and environmentally-friendly manner.

KyotoCooling wheel during installationWith all planning pieces in place, the state then set its sterling reputation for self-reliance to task, took a lead-by-example approach, and set an innovative new precedent by selecting the KyotoCooling thermal management technique, supported by Chatsworth Products, Inc. (CPI) infrastructure storage and CPI Passive Cooling®.

Thanks to plenty of prior analysis and research, the State of Montana paired its thermal solution with CPI's F-Series TeraFrame® Cabinets, equipped with Vertical Exhaust Ducts to allow hot air to be directed out of the cabinets and into an isolated return path above the drop ceiling. In isolating the hot return air, it's then circulated and absorbed by the innovative Kyoto wheel, and mixed with the seasonally cool, outside air to negate the need for more traditional (and more expensive) methods of cooling.

See this Data Center for Yourself

To truly appreciate what the State of Montana has accomplished with this data center, CPI is teaming up with KyotoCooling and industry experts to bring you the first-ever U.S. KyotoCooling Conference - October 25-26, 2011. This is your chance to tour the data center, meet the team, engage in presentations by CPI's Ian Seaton, the Uptime Institute's Robert "Dr. Bob" Sullivan, and the architect of KyotoCooling himself, Mees Lodder. The best part of all? The conference is complimentary! Jeff Cihocki, eContent Specialist

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