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What Is Colocation And Why Are Datacentres Being Built On Sewage Plants?

05th Apr 2022

Datacentres could be made more environmentally friendly if collocated with sewage treatment plants, suggests Tomorrow Water.

 

The idea is that heated water from a datacentre can be used to boost wastewater processing, and some of the treated water can then become the cooling water for the datacentre. The arrangement cuts the energy process required in the heating and cooling of the water as well as aiding in the treatment of wastewater.

In Korea, a memorandum of understanding has been signed between Samsung, Dohwa Engineering, BNZ Partners and Tomorrow Water to cooperatively develop the develop integrated datacentre and sanitation infrastructure solution, named ‘Co-Flow’ by the firm.

The Co-Flow process is also being evaluated in the US, as Tomorrow Water is partnered with sustainable design and engineering firm Arcadis, with the aim of developing similar colocation datacentres in the US.

The goal of colocation is to reduce the amount of energy required for both datacentres and sewage treatment, by resourcing the energy, heat, nutrient and water inputs and outputs to create renewable energy generation and a more sustainable and affordable way of reducing climate harm for the global population.

The firm has already implemented the solution at the Jungnang Water Recycling Centre in Seoul, in which the solution has reduced the plant’s total footprint by 60%, according to Tomorrow Water, and datacentres could be built on the freed-up spaces left behind if the process were to be repeated at other sites.

Co-Flow also solves the other issue plaguing datacentres – high demand and low real estate availability. By reducing the existing footprint of sewage treatment works and capitalising on that by constructing datacentres within them. It frees up development space and also saves water and energy.

Datacentre water cooling systems are not the only way this solution can be used, however. Microsoft has partnered with Finland’s largest energy provider to build a datacentre that heats homes as it cools servers. The waste heat given off by the datacentres can be moved via existing water pipe infrastructures to homes and businesses in Espoo Kauniainen, as well as the municipality of Kirkkonummi.

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What Is Colocation And Why Are Datacentres Being Built On Sewage Plants?

Datacentres could be made more environmentally friendly if collocated with sewage treatment plants, suggests Tomorrow Water.   The idea is that heated water from a datacentre can be used to boost wastewater processing, and some of the treated water can then become the cooling water for the datacentre. The arrangement cuts the energy process required […]


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