Data centres that switch from HDDs to SSDs use 70% less power

A row of servers in a blue data centre
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Solid-state drives (SSDs) are recommended as a more energy-efficient alternative to hard-disk drives (HDDs) in data centres, using 70% less power and 50% less space for the same capacity.

This is part of Huawei’s strategy to help data centres go green through data storage. The strategy reduces energy consumption per TB of data through high-density design, system convergence, data reduction, and full-lifecycle carbon footprint management.

This is especially important as by 2030, 1 yottabyte (YB) of data will be generated globally every year, representing a 23-fold increase over 2020, Huawei revealed at an event last week. Storing mass data consumes enormous amounts of energy, highlighting the importance of green and sustainable development.

As part of this strategy, Huawei looks to use high-density components and systems to increase the hardware density and heat dissipation efficiency of its data storage products, including replacing HDDs with SSDs. Its use of half-palm NVMe SSDs helps its storage systems to support 36 SSDs in a 2U disk enclosure, which it says delivers a higher hardware density than similar products and 25% higher heat dissipation efficiency than a traditional disk enclosure.

The company also hopes to ensure higher resource utilisation by supporting multiple protocols and eliminating storage silos. One storage system supports block, file, object, and Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS) protocols for diversified requirements to consolidate multiple kinds of storage. Additionally, the converged resource pool aims to consolidate multiple storage systems in data centres to improve their resource utilisation.


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Huawei also aims to use deduplication and compression algorithms to reduce data duplication. The algorithms currently help its storage systems deliver a data reduction ratio of up to 72:1, 20% higher than the industry benchmark.

"Huawei has always been committed to the green and low-carbon data storage strategy, providing customers with more environment-friendly products for sustainable development,” said Assaf Natanzon, Huawei's chief architect of Data Storage.

Initiatives into green data centre technology have become more popular recently, with Japan choosing six companies in February to help power new research into this area. The project aims to address the challenge of increasing power consumption at data centres in today’s digital society. The companies taking part aim to develop products to realise greater energy efficiency, larger capacity, and lower latency across data centre sites.

Zach Marzouk

Zach Marzouk is a former ITPro, CloudPro, and ChannelPro staff writer, covering topics like security, privacy, worker rights, and startups, primarily in the Asia Pacific and the US regions. Zach joined ITPro in 2017 where he was introduced to the world of B2B technology as a junior staff writer, before he returned to Argentina in 2018, working in communications and as a copywriter. In 2021, he made his way back to ITPro as a staff writer during the pandemic, before joining the world of freelance in 2022.