Equinix Rides AM3 Facility to Top Environmental Sustainability Award

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Equinix’s much-heralded AM3 data center in Amsterdam keeps filling up our trophy case.

The facility carried Equinix to a win in the Environmental Sustainability category at this year’s International Datacentre and Cloud Awards in London.

The award recognized the facility for an innovative cooling and energy-sharing design that significantly reduces carbon dioxide emissions and optimizes its power usage effectiveness (PUE), a key measure of data center energy efficiency.

Michiel Eielts, the managing director of Equinix (Netherlands) B.V., said the company was “delighted” with the award.

“AM3 is now in its second year and customer uptake continues to be excellent as a result of our industry-leading connectivity and uptime as well as the tremendous strides Equinix is taking to ensure energy efficiency remains one of our top priorities,” Eielts said.

It’s not the first time AM3 has grabbed some of the green spotlight. It won the Datacenter Dynamics Green Data Center EMEA Award in 2012.

The International Datacentre and Cloud Awards are judged by regional experts and considered Europe’s top data center industry awards. The panel was impressed with how AM3 keeps things cool.

AM3 relies on free-air cooling until the temperature hits about 64 degrees Fahrenheit. Then it cools the data center using hybrid cooling towers and water drawn from an aquifer about 170 meters underground.

Even the heat removed from the data center isn’t wasted. The system transfers it into the water, which is then used to heat a building at the University of Amsterdam.

The facility also has a solar photo voltaic system to supplement the power supply, and its rooftop is covered in vegetation to keep the building cool and reduce storm water runoff, which can carry pollution to local lakes and streams.

The payoff is seen in AM3 in lower carbon dioxide emissions and its PUE rating, which measures how much of a data center’s energy use goes to the core task of powering the computing equipment and how much is needed for overhead, such as lighting and cooling. AM3 has a design PUE rating of 1.19, which is far below the industry average of 2.50.

Even as AM3 takes a bow for its energy efficiency, its other assets shouldn’t be forgotten. It has the extensive connectivity needed to share data with partners and access to two Internet exchanges, which helps Equinix customers reach all of the European Union within 50 milliseconds.

For more about Equinix’s commitment to running data centers that are both green and interconnected, visit our website.