Data centers run massive industrial scale operations that consume as much electricity as a small town and require extensive environmental controls, backup power supplies, redundant network communication connections and physical access control systems in order ensure uninterrupted operation.
While the typical electronic systems in the data center are integrated into its Data Center Information Management (DCIM) systems via SNMP protocols, the data center also includes many devices used in generic building management such as electric sub-meters, HVAC-specific sensors, and physical access control systems. These devices and subsystems run on entirely different protocols, typically BACnet and Modbus, in order to integrate with the facility’s Building Management System (BMS). This creates a serious integration challenge as the building subsystems and devices need to feed information into the DCIM system for facility managers to have a holistic view of the data center’s total health.
The Connectivity Challenge
As data centers evolve over time, integrating BMS and/or DCIM systems becomes critical to centralizing control over operations and reducing ongoing data center production costs, such as power and cooling. Data center facility managers will need to connect an increasingly diverse range of BACnet, Modbus, and SNMP devices and subsystems into their DCIM systems in order to achieve the real-time monitoring and granular control capabilities needed to optimize performance and costs.
- Modbus to SNMP
- BACnet to SNMP
- Modbus RTU to SNMP
- BACnet/IP to SNMP
- Modbus TCP/IP to SNMP
- BACnet MS/TP to SNMP
Gas Hazards in a Data Center
While essential for uninterrupted operations during power outages, backup power provided by chemical batteries and diesel (or alternative fuel) generators could prove a hazardous threat to personnel and assets if not closely monitored. Lead-acid batteries release hydrogen gas when charging, potentially leading to an explosion if left up checked. Diesel Generators running in areas with poor ventilation could result in a buildup of Carbon Monoxide and create a hazard for personnel.
Be sure to check out SMC’s line of connected hazardous and toxic gas detectors to add value to an integrated data center monitoring system.