PCMAN – As one of the leading giant innovation companies, Microsoft has once again proposed an intriguing idea that could possibly solve one of the most expensive problems currently experienced by data centers—the air conditioning bill.
Data centers hold an important role within cloud computing, which is to power everything from streaming video, social networks, emails, and others, which contain thousands of computer servers generating lots of heat. When there is too much heat, the servers crash.
This problem causes high air conditioning usage, which cost a lot of money for companies, including Microsoft. Which is why, according to one of the researchers at Microsoft, Jules Verne, the future of data centers may be under the sea. They believe putting the gear under cold ocean water might fix the problem.
Microsoft has tested a prototype of a self-contained data center that can operate hundreds of feet below the surface of the ocean. This idea might also answer the exponentially growing energy demands of the computing world. Microsoft is considering pairing the system with turbine or a tidal energy system to generate electricity.
Called Project Natick, this idea might lead to strands of giant steel tubes linked by fiber optic cables placed on the seafloor. It could also suspend containers shape like jelly beans beneath the surface to capture the ocean current with turbines that will generate electricity.
The prototype was called “Leona Philpot” and was deployed off the central coast of California on August 10, 2015. Ben Cutler, one of Microsoft’s computer designers slash engineers first doubted the idea of combining water and electricity. However, as the project goes by, it makes a lot of sense.
By mass producing the capsules, Microsoft believe that they could shorten the deployment time of new data centers from two years on land, to just 90 days—which offers a huge advantage in cost.
With the completion of a 105-day trial of steel capsule—eight feet in diameter—placed 30 feet underwater in the Pacific Ocean, the researchers may conclude that the system held up. Even though they had worried about failures and leaks, the successful completion had led the engineers to extend the time of experiment.