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Could Data Centers’ tremendous heat be utilized by Soletair Power’s CO2 capturing technology?

Data centers, integral to the digital age, confront intricate challenges regarding energy consumption, heat production, and environmental sustainability.

According to a report released by Forbes back in 2017, data centers based in the United States alone utilized more than 90 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity that year.

The average data center consumes over 100 times the power of a large commercial office building. A sizable proportion of data centers are clustered around large urban centers. More than 2,600 of them are located in the world’s 20 largest metropolises. The countries with the most data centers in the world are the US, the UK, Germany, China, the Netherlands, Australia, Canada, France, Japan, and Russia. The largest concentration of data centers in a U.S. city is within the New York-New Jersey metropolitan area (approximately 306 centers).

Data centers — the spaces, buildings, and campuses that house computer servers and related data-storage equipment — generate enormous amounts of waste heat, which is often simply released into the atmosphere. But in an increasingly computerized world, in which billions of devices are connected to the internet and many companies opt to co-locate server functions at shared facilities, the need for more and ever-larger data centers is growing, even as the pressures for greater energy efficiency and decarbonization mount.

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, for example, has 21 data centers around the world and seven more under development, including one in Mesa, Arizona, that will total 2.5 million square feet when completed.

How much Heat do Data Centers generate?

Data centers are used to conduct large-scale computing and serve as the lifeblood of many significant companies. They generate a lot of heat, so cooling systems are installed to maintain the optimal temperature for work. You can expect that the hot aisles within a data center can range from around 85 to 115 degrees Fahrenheit. Data centers thrive on cool temperatures, so the heat that gets generated for them needs to be fully utilized to make this work efficiently.

So how do we put Data Centers’ heat into use?

Data centers have several features that make them uniquely attractive for heat recovery, including consistent heat output due to their 24/7 operation, consistent load, and backup power systems that provide resiliency for external users of the recovered heat. Soletair Power’s direct air capture of CO2 technology can be installed in Data Centers and our system can put this excess heat produced to great use!

Data center energy use and tackling CO2 emissions

Soletair Power’s modular carbon capture system is optimized for integration into existing HVAC systems within buildings, for example, data centers. By retrofitting data centers with Soletair Power’s technology, excess heat can be systematically harvested and repurposed. Compared to any other direct air capture technology, Soletair Power’s system produces no additional noise by muffling the sound to below 50 decibels. (60 decibels sounds like background music, 75 like a vacuum cleaner while 85 sounds like a power lawnmower or a subway). The system will capture CO2 even at a very low airflow rate, making it ideal for installing inside buildings. The efficient utilization of excess heat leads to enhanced energy efficiency within data centers.

Beyond heat recovery, Soletair Power’s technology includes the capture of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the ventilation airflow within data centers. Captured CO2 can be stored or employed in diverse applications, further reducing the environmental footprint of data center operations.

Soletair Power Buildings capturing CO2 from air
Soletair Power – Buildings capturing CO2 from air

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