Half of data centres around the world are expected to deploy advanced robots with artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities by 2025, according to a report by research firm Gartner.
The use of AI enabled robots is expected to provide 30% higher operating efficiencies and help alleviate staff shortage challenges present in the data centre industry.
According to Sid Nag, research vice president at Gartner, the gap between growing volumes in data centres and the workforce to manage the same is expanding.
“Data centre operations will only increase in complexity as organisations move more diverse workloads to the cloud, and as the cloud becomes the platform for a combinatorial use of additional technologies such as edge and 5G, to name a few.” Nag said.
What goes into data centre operations?
A typical data centre consists of computing hardware, equipment such as routers, security systems, storage, management systems, software applications and a host of other components.
The work needed to maintain and run these are complex and involve a host of processes such as capacity planning, rightsizing (process of restructuring to make it more efficient) virtual machine and container environments and proper utilization of resources.
How can robots help?
Robots can help combat these tedious tasks through undertaking large scale repetitive functions with ease and with minimal errors. One such area is where servers are phased out and there is a requirement to decommission and destroy drives.
For companies that conduct mass upgrades quickly, industrial robots can conduct processes faster and more efficiently.
“Data centres are an ideal sector to pair robots and AI to deliver a more secure, accurate and efficient environment that requires much less human intervention,” added Nag.
Other uses of robots in the data centre are:
Focused monitoring: Robot sensors probe provides large granular server rack temperature data without requiring invasive hardware. These robots can be used for remote monitoring and can also be used to collect data such as sound and images to figure out irregularities.
Security: Robots can secure datacenters digitally and physically. Some of the examples include capabilities such as checking human temperatures via heat sensors, or license plate recognition for parking facilities.
Use of AI in cloud: AI can work in conjunction with robots to monitor and manage IT processes in the data centre. This will enable platforms to learn from past situations and improve efficiencies in future instances of issues, hence helping engineers on site to perform better.
“While robots have already been leveraged across industries such as automotive and manufacturing, opportunities across data centers have been overlooked,” added Nag.
IT leaders will be able to steer intelligent operations and create key differentiations such as increased uptime, and meeting service level agreements for cloud offerings quicker.