Data centers are moving towards colder climates. It’s not something you’d necessarily think about when considering center locations, but it jumps right out at you as soon as you do.
Plum’s data centers are in Philadelphia, Boston and London, England—all fairly cold-weather climates (for most of the year, anyway).
The benefit of a cold-weather climate is a reduction in energy costs, something that’s becoming more important as cloud computing grows and more and more data centers pop up.
According to the Wall Street Journal, data centers accounted for 1.5% of total global electricity use last year. Also, internet traffic is expected to quadruple over the next five years. So it’s a concern, for sure.
Data centers can pack thousands of processors into a relatively small space. Having all those electronics sardined together in a confined space generates loads of heat.
One of the highest costs in maintaining a data center these days (especially with ever-falling hardware prices) is the cooling costs. (Ever walk into the server room at your office? It can get wicked hot in there.)
It’s critical to keep the temperature down in a data center (or server room, for that matter) so you don’t fry the circuits, as they say. That means air-conditioning and precise temperature control. That, in turns, means money.
So, everything else being equal, a data center in the North Atlantic is going to cost way less in day-to-day expenses than one in the Caribbean.
Which is why we’re seeing companies moving their centers to colder climates. Actually, colder climates with solid, inexpensive energy supplies. Like in England or New England from September or October to May or June.
It comes down to cost and power consumption. Lower expenses and less power consumption are good for Plum, other companies with data centers and the world at large.
So, how about a data center farther north? Stay tuned for Data Center at the North Pole?…