The use of renewable energies is increasingly becoming compulsory for data centre operators, and particularly for hyperscalers. A large data centre set up close to a wind or solar farm will benefit from clean energy that doesn’t need to travel far. However, there is another factor that could come to the fore in the future. Since data centres generate a lot of heat, it would make sense to build them close to infrastructures that can utilise that heat, such as hothouses and aquaponic facilities. When a data centre is equipped with water cooling systems, the warm water these produce, which reaches around 60 degrees Celsius, could be used to heat nearby buildings, for example. Green IT experts at the Borderstep Institute in Berlin have calculated that, in theory, a tenth of the heating requirements in Frankfurt – one of Germany’s data centre hotspots – could be met today using waste heat from local data centres.
All articles of the cover story:
The IT trends
Make IT simple
Modernisation aims for crisis resilience
Standardised technology is taking centre stage
The demand for racks is rocketing