Intelligent Data Centres Issue 35 | Page 46

In relation to Lithium-ion batteries , Vertiv experts expect the lithium battery recycling infrastructure to expand in 2022 and eliminate one of the few remaining barriers to widespread adoption of Lithium-ion batteries in the data centre .
• Artificial Intelligence gets real : As today ’ s networks get more complex and more distributed and the Augmented and Virtual Reality demands of the metaverse become more prominent , the need for realtime computing and decision-making becomes more critical . This real-time need is sensitive to latencies , and under the increasingly common hybrid model of enterprise , public and private clouds , colocation , and Edge , full-time manual management is impractical , if not impossible . Artificial Intelligence ( AI ) and Machine Learning will be critical to optimising the performance of these networks .
It will take time and focus to collect the right data , build the right models and train the network platform to make the right decisions . However , the programming tools have become simplified enough that data scientists are able to point computing resources at a problem without having to be experts in programming or hardware . The availability of AI hardware from established vendors , cloud options for the same , a simplified
toolchain and an educational focus on data science has put AI in play for even smaller companies . It all adds up to accelerated AI adoption in 2022 .
As with every technological advance , there are ripple effects . The increase in AI will unavoidably increase computing and heat densities and , by extension , accelerate the adoption of liquid cooling . Among other challenges : lowering the barrier to entry places a premium on choosing the right vendors , platforms and systems to trust .
• The post-pandemic data centre takes shape : Some 2.9 GW worth of new data centre construction is under way globally – up from 1.6 GW in 2020 ( Cushman & Wakefield ). Those data centres will be the first built specifically to meet the needs of a post-COVID world . More activity will be focused at the Edge , where VMware projects a dramatic shift in workload distribution – from 5 % currently to 30 % over the next five years . Availability will remain the top priority , even at the Edge , but lower latency is a rising need to support healthy buildings , Smart Cities , distributed energy resources and 5G . 2022 will see increased investment in the Edge to support this new normal ( remote work , increased reliance on e-commerce and telehealth , video streaming ) and the continuing rollout of 5G .
• Drive towards integration : Various data centre equipment providers have been embracing integrated systems that allow for modular capacity additions for years , with integrated racks and rows among today ’ s most popular data centre offerings . In 2022 , we ’ ll see the next step in integration as data centres work with providers to better integrate larger systems – all components of the power infrastructure , for example – and deliver seamless interoperability .
The benefits of integration as a concept are well known – reduced construction and deployment costs , flexible capacity management – and applying the same approach across larger systems delivers speed . Rackbased power solutions are early accelerators of integration momentum .
“ Some of my proudest achievements at Vertiv over the past 12 months have been working on pioneering energy efficiency projects and launching more innovative technologies to move sustainability closer to the core of everything we do ,” said Giordano Albertazzi , President for Vertiv in Europe , Middle East and Africa . “ 2022 will bring even more impactful advances across technology and strategy , both at Vertiv and as an industry as a whole .” ◊
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