Microsoft sinks deep sea data centre off Orkney

Microsoft’s effort to build underwater datacenter reaches next phase

Tidal turbines and wave energy converters will help power the data center, which is as powerful as several thousand high-end consumer PCs.

For around five years, Microsoft has been experimenting with subsea data centres having previously sunk one on the Californian coast for five months in 2015.

The data centre was towed out to sea where it was lowered underwater, switched on and connected to data backhaul to shore through a combined fibre-optic and power cable.

In 2014, researchers estimated that data centers were responsible for about 2% of total global greenhouse emissions annually and that number continues to rise as more of the world's population gains access to the internet, cloud computing continues to expand, and artificial intelligence (AI) gets embedded in more and more devices. Since most of the world's population lives within about 120 miles of the coast, data needs to travel less distance to reach coastal people.

Environmentalists anxious about the servers having a direct warming effect on the sea need not worry, says Microsoft, as the company's Ben Cutler told the BBC he would expect the surrounding few metres of sea to be "a few thousandths of a degree warmer at most". The sinking of its data center into the sea off Scotland's Orkney Islands was intentional, reports the BBC.

Microsoft has installed an underwater data centre in a Scottish sea to determine whether it can save energy by cooling it in the water.

Warriors beat Cavs to close in on second straight title
LeBron James scored 33 points and Kevin Love 20 for the Cavs, who have fallen into a hole in which no team has ever emerged. The next two days will be angst-laden for Cleveland, though hardly anyone should be fretting the outcome of this series .

Spencer Fowers, senior member of technical staff for Microsoft's special projects research group, prepares Project Natick's Northern Isles datacenter for deployment off the coast of the Orkney Islands in Scotland.

Compared to more conventional data centers that can span football fields, Project Natick's underwater facility is a gnat at about 40-feet long and resembles a cylinder-like cargo container typically seen on big, shipping vessels.

The software giant was able to cram 12 server racks into the data center, but those racks have enough storage for five million movies.

This wouldn't be the first time when Microsoft has tested this idea.

Oceans also provide consistent cool temperatures which is essential for a data center to run well, cooling down data centers is what costs its operator (and the environment) heavily, so removing that cost makes sense too.

Related News:



Most liked

No agreement yet between US, China on ZTE: Trump aide
The company has 20 USA offices or research centers and has sponsored five National Basketball Association teams. Oclaro got 18% of its business from ZTE previous year , while 30% of Acacia's total revenue was from ZTE.

Kevin Durant Explains Stone-Cold Glare After Drilling Dagger 3 Vs. Cavaliers
James, who can be a free agent in July, stopped just short of saying the Cavaliers don't have enough to beat these Warriors. It would be the Cavs' third Finals loss to the Warriors in the past four years.

Scott Pruitt's Fancy-Pen-Buying Days Are Numbered
Pruitt's wife never got that franchise, as first reported by the Washington Post . What that meant: Pruitt was seeking to get his wife a Chick-fil-A franchise.

Manchester United reach agreement to sign Fred from Shakhtar Donetsk
A native of Belo Horizonte, Fred has been capped seven times by the Selecao . "A further announcement will be made in due course". One ex-teammate told the South China Morning Post: " Fred's a good player skilfully, though he's not physically strong or quick.

Guatemala warns of greater activity after volcano explodes again
Though numerous clouds obscure a view of the volcano, the footage shows a dark ash cloud suddenly grow in the centre of the image. Numerous victims are unrecognisable, with officials warning that DNA testing and other methods may be needed to identify them.

Jutanugarn earns four-stroke lead at U.S. Women's Open
But Kim made bogey - her first of the day - on 18 while Jutanugarn made par again to send the format to sudden death. Her confidence shaken, she had another bogey on 12 and the tournament was suddenly much closer than anyone expected.

Confirmed: United Have Deals In Place For 2 Players
The 25-year-old made 37 appearances for Shakhtar, as they went on to lift the Ukraine Premier Liga title this past season. Former Shakhtar Donetsk boss Mircea Lucescu has confirmed Fred has completed his transfer to Manchester United .

Iran Tells UN it will Begin to BOOST URANIUM Production
Although much remains unknown about the country's activities, they are advanced - unlike Iran it has built and tested nuclear weapons.

Serena Williams pulls out of showdown with Maria Sharapova
In her press conference, Serena said she began to feel the issue in her third-round singles match against Julia Goerges . Serena Williams has withdrawn from Roland Garros just moments before her fourth-round match against Maria Sharapova .

China warns USA against tariffs as trade talks end
French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire referred to the "G6 plus one" and expressed "total incomprehension" over the U.S. actions. He blames what he calls their abusive trade policies for America's persistent trade deficits - $566 billion past year .

Oil slides amid 'lack of clarity' on OPEC and record U.S. production
Iran's light crude oil price rose 43 cents in the week ended on May 25, to continue its upward trend for third consecutive weeks. OPEC extended the agreement in November 2017, with the production cuts scheduled to remain in place until the end of 2018.

Warriors vs. Cavaliers, Game 2
After some solid performances in the Eastern Conference Finals, it seemed as though the Cavs had found their groove again. While Love scored 21 points to go along with 13 rebounds, he converted just one of his eight three-point shot attempts.

Trump Keeps Promise as Manufacturing Jobs Soar
On Thursday, Costco said it would raise starting wages for United States employees by $1, to a minimum of $14 an hour. Washington has long tried to prevent market-moving data like the employment numbers from being prematurely released.

First lady to hang back on president's Camp David weekend
Some noted the similarity to Trump's voice, while others noted the fact that anyone could easily tweet from her account. US first lady Melania Trump arrives in the Rose Garden to speak at the White House May 7, 2018 in Washington , DC.

Roseanne says she 'begged' ABC to save her show
Roseanne Barr has been widely criticised for a tweet she posted to Valeri Jarret, a former White House advisor for Barack Obama . Ms Jarrett revealed that Mr Bob Iger, head of ABC parent company Disney, had called to tell her about the ditching of the show.