The 6,000 square foot facility will cost $12.4m (£7.5m) to build, and run a mixture of IBM BladeCenter, IBM Power 575 and an IBM z10 systems.
At its heart will be a new electricity generating system that uses micro-turbine engines fuelled by natural gas to generate power and provide cooling for the servers, which means it can operate off the main power grid.
"Energy use is becoming the largest single cost in operating datacentres, and $2bn [£1.2bn] per year is wasted nationally due to inefficiencies. IBM is dedicated to helping customers reduce electricity consumption to benefit their businesses and the environment," said Vijay Lund, vice president for development and manufacturing operations in IBM's Systems and Technology Group.
"IBM is joining with Syracuse University to address the end-to-end datacentre infrastructure, from analytical modelling and simulation to electricity generation to cooling systems to the operation and management of servers, in order to develop the greenest, most efficient datacentre possible."
The facility is being set up as part of IBM's 'Smarter Planet' initiative to showcase technologies to be used in other areas of the market. Syracuse University will research and analyse the datacentre's power and cooling technologies, and build models to monitor, estimate, plan and control energy use.
"This project yields benefits in every direction imaginable. It's a perfect example of how effective cross-sector partnerships can be," said Syracuse University chancellor and president Nancy Cantor.
"IBM, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority and Syracuse University are bringing their strengths to the table to gain vital insight into solving crucial aspects of the intensifying global problem of increasing energy consumption that none of us could achieve separately. Best of all, the solutions we find will serve the public good."
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