Locust Storage came out of stealth last week with the announcement of a 'green' storage product that allows a 90% reduction in power over traditional storage vendors.

Locust's Smart Power Down storage system is a Power over Ethernet (PoE) hybrid drive that improves power management. It combines PoE with a Lithium Ion battery reservoir to conserve excess energy when demand is low. The PoE Hybrid Drive eliminates AC/DC power conversion and cooling fans.

The Locust architecture also includes data redundancy and protection for sequential data writes and combines solid-state technology. Locust Storage systems are expected to be available in 2010 with beta testing ensuing in the first quarter and delivery in the third quarter. The company may use supercapacitors in the future.

In the Smart Power Down storage system, drives are automatically powered on and off when requests for data are made. The company estimates that as much as 80% of data is unaccessed in any three-month period, thus wasting energy if the drives are spinning.

Locust Storage was founded by Seth Georgian, formerly a data centre manager at Fugro West, an oil and gas company. The company was founded in 2009 and is seeking first round funding.

According to its LinkedIn profile, the company has 12 employees. Locust's board of directors includes Terry Klein, formerly vice president of the Advanced Systems Group at Dell; an adviser to Locust is Tom Buiocchi, formerly vice president of worldwide marketing at Brocade.