Data centers account network data like social network profiles and uploaded media. The U.S. alone stores a third of the world’s data—nearly 900 exabytes (900 billion gigabytes)—in data centers all over the country. With eight Internet users coming online every second, six of them in North America, data centers have to expand constantly to make room.
However, expansions take their toll on the local power grid. According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, data centers consumed a total of 91 billion kWh, enough to power New York’s homes twice over, in 2013. Most of the consumption stems from HVAC systems used to keep the databanks cool. After all, heat is the enemy of sensitive electronics. Continue reading
An inquisitive child would ask a lot about what he sees around the house. While most of those questions may seem silly to adults, others simply make sense, and even make adults wonder for themselves. For instance, questions like “How does a microphone make one’s voice louder than normal?” or “Why is a flat iron hot?” can leave grownups scratching their heads. Continue reading
You’ve probably often heard that you need to unplug your home appliances when not in use to protect them from electrical surges. This advice, if put into practice, can protect your investments. Electrical surges, after all, may not only damage your appliances but also cause fires. Here are some facts you need to know about this phenomenon to avoid its devastating effects. Continue reading
Different current sensors, when integrated into a measurement system, produce different outputs. As such, extreme caution must be taken when doing so, because installing the wrong sensor to your equipment or attaching a sensor the wrong way can lead to irreparable damage, not only to the sensor, but to the whole system as well. Likewise, using the incorrect sensor presents a huge safety risk to personnel. Continue reading
Global energy demand will continue to increase due to population growth. In a recent Hydrocarbon Engineering report, Emma McAleavey writes that even with energy efficiency measures in place, residential, commercial, and industrial demand for energy will grow between 2010 and 2040.
Fortunately, North America and Europe will see the lowest increase in demand. Building code updates, energy efficiency mandates, and investment in alternative sources of energy are able to keep the rate of increase down to 20 percent. McAleavey reports, though, that it could’ve been 50 percent—at par with Asia, a budding mega-economy.