Overcoming the increasing challenges to data solution providers

The energy market is in crisis. Russia has reduced supply via a key pipeline to 20% of capacity, causing the cost of Natural Gas to hit an all-time high and driving the cost of energy across many countries in Europe to prices that could lead to industry-wide shutdowns. Pubs and Restaurants are being forced to close as they can no longer afford to heat the building, and even schools are concerned about how they will meet their energy costs this winter. 

Heatwaves hit Europe this summer, with the UK experiencing the hottest day since records began this July. Nine of the 10 hottest days in the UK have been recorded since 1990, and the temperatures continue to hit record highs. Drought frequently follows heatwaves, and agriculture is experiencing one of the least productive years in living memory, with livestock well into winter feed as no grass has grown, and crops failing due to lack of water. 

Finally, the US government have acted, and the Senate passed the Inflation Reduction Act, confirming a $369bn spend on Climate-related projects including investing in renewable energy, incentivising purchase of EV’s, coastal protection zones, biofuels and hydrogen plants.  Though some say they are 10 years behind the position of the European Union, it is a welcome investment in part. 

According to French President Emmanuel Macron, the best energy is that which we don’t use, so if your business is looking to reduce both energy use and costs, there could be a solution in the Cloud. Data Centre energy and water consumption is under the spotlight and rightly so, given that the typical data centre consumes around 3-5 million gallons of water per day, roughly equivalent to the water consumption of 10,000 people. 

PeaSoup offers a different solution by using Liquid Immersion Cooling technology. A simple method where servers are submerged in a dielectric liquid within a self-contained unit that cycles the liquid around the energy-hungry electronic components, reducing the need for traditional air-cooled systems. As a result, energy consumption is reduced and reliability is improved. Companies are facing an ever-growing chorus of the need to improve sustainability factors, but it is a moving target, as rule changes, Government initiatives and laws are introduced and amended on an almost weekly basis.

The global scale of climate change, the causes and effects, is being realised every year, record high temperatures in the UK in 2022 are just one example, with actions being taken to combat and reduce the effects being liked to a sticking plaster on a gaping wound. There are changes that businesses are obliged to make to reduce their effect on the environment, which include reduction of waste, reduction of their carbon footprint, and switching to more sustainable practices. 

Data is often a forgotten factor in sustainability but every email sent has a carbon footprint and if you consider the number of emails sent by both individuals and corporations on a daily basis (globally this amounts to around 3.5 million emails per second!) the carbon footprint of that alone is phenomenal!  

Another factor that has become more prevalent this year is water security. As more and more data centres are built (the amount of data will always increase), usually in the legacy style of a large warehouse, with atmospheric controls including air conditioning and humidifiers, both with high-level energy consumption, the demand for water also increases. For example, a 15-megawatt data centre could consume around 1.6 million litres of water per day, roughly that same consumption of around 10,000 people. There are obviously factors influencing the consumption of water by data centres, such as their location and size but the fact remains, they are high consumers of energy and water, but essential to everyday life. 

To address this situation, companies can choose to store data in a more sustainable way, with a company that focuses on renewable sources of energy, sustainable practices and technology that has a proven energy consumption of around 40% less than a legacy data centre. 

Additionally, the lifespan of servers held within a legacy data centre is short. The heat generated in the constant processing of data burns out the components quickly, meaning more frequent replacement is needed, thus increasing the costs of traditional data storage in comparison to liquid immersion cooling. Technology can more easily withstand the constant and immediately controlled submerged state in the dialectic fluid and lasts longer before a replacement is needed. 

The cost of energy has created a great many front pages over the last few months, and still influences headlines while we wait to fully understand what form the intervention will take for businesses and consumers alike. If this is only a temporary solution then we do perhaps need to look to alternatives, reducing our consumption rather than the cost which falls outside of our control. Alternative sources of energy are one route to go down, and PeaSoup have and will always use renewable energy sources to power their data centre storage

Marketing Manager, Art Malinowski, commented: “We were the first Cloud providers in the UK to use Liquid Immersion Cooling, and this sustainable and energy saving technology is proven to be a more planet friendly way to store data in the cloud. When businesses are looking at solutions for data storage it really should be a consideration to reduce their carbon footprint.”

Put simply, data (and the processing thereof) will continue to grow exponentially, and we need to combat the growing need for both energy and water consumption to process that data, and there is a sustainable solution. Cloud based platforms using liquid immersion cooling have an additional benefit: the heat generated from the cooling of the technology can be recycled. Projects are underway involving the cycling of the heat generated by the hardware to heat buildings, which involves a heat exchange system. Similarities to air and ground source heat pumps can be drawn as it uses similar technology and has the same sustainable advantages. The future is sustainable, data can be used as a force for good. 

Find your way to a greener and more sustainable solution with PeaSoup.Cloud. 

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Martin Bradburn is the CTO and founder of PeaSoup.Cloud and responsible for all of the company’s operations, including end-to-end technical, service and support developments globally. He plays a key role in the continued expansion of strategic cloud and vendor relationships, ensuring top-quality products and services are being delivered in the increasing demanding sustainable cloud and data centre market.

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