New technology uses liquefied natural gas storage tanks for data center free cooling

As reported by IEEE Spectrum, Cambridge, MA-based TeraCool has developed a system that marries a source of unwanted heat -- data centers -- with the largely unused cold available at LNG terminals.

TeraCool uses liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage tanks for data center free cooling
TeraCool uses liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage tanks for data center free cooling

IEEE Spectrum's Martin LaMonica has the following report, dated Aug. 21:

"Cloud companies have placed their data centers in cold climates — even inside the Arctic Circle — to more easily cool their computing gear. Startup TeraCool proposes that data centers tap into another source of free cooling: liquefied natural gas storage tanks.

Cambridge, MA-based TeraCool has developed a system that marries a source of unwanted heat — data centers — with the largely unused cold available at LNG terminals. With sufficiently large capacity at an LNG port, the company calculates that a data center could cool itself from the surplus cold that’s produced while turning stored liquid gas into pipeline-ready gas. With additional equipment, TeraCool says it could also generate power on-site.

So far, it hasn’t found a data center operator willing to give its novel cooling system a try. But CEO and co-founder Bob Shatten argues that the technical risk is low because capturing cold from LNG terminals is already done for other purposes, such as producing industrial gases for freezing food. TeraCool’s innovation is applying this method to data centers, which typically spend at least a third of their energy bills on cooling.
"

Full Story:To Zero Out Data Center Air Conditioner Bills, Build It Next to an LNG Port (spectrum.ieee.org)

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