Racing Pioneer McLaren Teams With IO to Turbo-Charge Data Center Efficiency

IO is partnering with McLaren Applied Technologies and bringing its expertise in Formula 1 racing to the data center.

Jason Verge

June 7, 2013

3 Min Read
Racing Pioneer McLaren Teams With IO to Turbo-Charge Data Center Efficiency
Dr. Geoff McGrath, Managing Director of McLaren Applied Technologies and George Slessman, CEO and Product Architect, IO.


George Slessman, CEO and Product Architect of IO (at left) meets with Dr. Geoff McGrath, Managing Director of McLaren Applied Technologies, to discuss the design and engineering collaboration between the two organizations. (Photo: IO)

Perhaps nothing is designed quite as meticulously as a Formula 1 race car. Every inch, every part counts; it’s a world where efficiency in design is the driving force. IO wants to apply this philosophy to the data center.

It’s for this reason IO is forming a partnership with McLaren Applied Technologies (MAT) to help develop the next generation of energy efficient data centers. MAT has extensive Formula 1 experience, and it will apply this intelligence to the data center in a unique partnership.

MAT will apply its expertise in performance management systems, simulation and high performance engineering, to help improve the design and operation of future data centers and reduce energy consumption. McLaren’s position as the global leader in sophisticated software and hardware integration was a primary driver (rim-shot) for IO. The company’s ability to deliver performance breakthroughs on track and via hi-tech simulation has informed the roadmap for IO, with regard to its IO.Anywhere modular data centers and IO.OS data center operating system software.

"Anyone who has seen a Formula 1 race knows that McLaren is unrivaled when it comes to integrating outstanding software with the hardware built to receive it," said Kevin Malik, IO CIO and GM of IO Labs. "We are extremely excited about this partnership and its potential to yield substantial advances in the telemetry, visibility, and analytics of IO data center technology. Our companies speak the same language and the insights gained from this collaboration will be invaluable to the data center space."

Improving the Aerodynamics of the Data Center

The same way MAT has improved aerodynamics of cars, it will help improve the “aerodynamics” of the data center to cut the energy used in cooling. The partnership will use advanced analytics to model patterns of data usage, optimize data center operations and reduce energy usage. It will apply simulation technology to further improve resilience to seismic events on data centers.

The partnership was announced at the Innovation Forum in Singapore, home to MAT’s headquarters for the AsiaPac region.

"Data centers are integral to all our lives," said Geoff McGrath, Managing Director of McLaren Applied Technologies, at the event. "However, as the amount of information we collect, process and store continues to grow, the demand for energy will also increase.  Our partnership with IO will enable us to utilize our unique expertise in performance management, simulation and high performance design to make a real difference to this global energy challenge."

IO is thinking outside the box here.  “IO is already the world leader in the development of cutting edge data center technology and systems, McLaren said at the Forum. “ However, they have challenged themselves and McLaren to think differently and to identify ways to improve efficiency, to cut energy usage and reduce emissions.”

IO recently announced its first international data center in Singapore, as part of its work with anchor client Goldman Sachs. Earlier this week George Slessman, the CEO of IO, tweeted a photo of the first IO modules arriving in Singapore:



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