Cisco Systems has announced its intent to acquire Arch Rock, a pioneer in Internet protocol-based wireless technology used to monitor data center operations and smart-grid applications.

Based in San Francisco, Arch Rock has made a name for itself by providing wireless systems and sensors that can measure power, temperature, and pressure conditions in a wide range of data center operations, including server racks and air conditioning systems. It transmits the monitoring data wirelessly to a central application that provides a dashboard of metrics, including energy usage and the data center’s overall Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE).

While Cisco will no doubt build on the company’s data center offerings, it indicated its primary attraction in acquiring Arch Rock was its interest in developing smart-grid technologies.

“Arch Rock’s wireless mesh technology enhances Cisco’s IP-based, end-to-end smart-grid offerings,” Laura Ipsen, senior vice president of Cisco’s Smart Grid business unit, said in a statement. “This acquisition further positions Cisco as a strategic partner to utilities working to better manage power supply and demand, improve the security and reliability of energy delivery, and optimize operational costs.”

Arch Rock’s technology provides a means for utilities to connect smart meters and other intelligent devices over a secure, multi-way wireless mesh network. Cisco said the Arch Rock technology will complement a recently announced strategic alliance Cisco formed earlier this month with Itron Inc. of Liberty Lake, Wash., to develop an IP-based platform for utilities to operate smart-grid systems.

Terms of the Arch Rock acquisition were not released.




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