芬兰回收电脑热量 感冒有治了

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Finland used to be one of Europe's poorest countries. Now it's a hub for high-tech innovation. The big name of course is the cell phone company, Nokia. But there are many Finnish companies that run large data centers. These are essentially huge rooms of servers that computer companies around the world use to store their data. Now some of these servers are being put to a surprising use.



This story starts in a bomb shelter deep beneath downtown Helsinki. These days, the space is being used for something very different. A Finnish IT company called Academica is busy installing racks for servers.


Pieteri Parvinen of Academica explains that data centers do more than just store bits of information. All those machines also give off a lot of heat. They need to be kept cool. And that's where something called district cooling comes in. You see, about 75 feet below the server room is a series of huge water pipes. They carry cold water, usually Baltic Sea water, throughout Helsinki. That water is used to cool homes and apartments. Or in this case, a room full of running computers.


Niko Wirgentius: And then we realized that, hey, there are a lot of surplus heat related to these kind of a large scale server rooms.


Niko Wirgentius is with a city-owned company called Helsinki Energy.


Wirgentius: And then we realized that that's the resources that otherwise would be wasted or unused. So we decided to transfer that surplus heat to heating network. This is a really simple idea. This is not a rocket science. There is two pipelines. One's come from our production plant and comes here to server room. It cools down all the servers and then that warm water comes back to our production plant to heat up the houses and domestic hot water.


Estimates are that these two server rooms can heat 500 homes for a year, even in Finland's brutal winters. And using recycled heat, the thinking goes, will also reduce some of the need for fossil fuel. For Academica, the projected cost savings is substantial, says Pieteri Parvinen.


Parvinen: Actually, we have made calculations that our electricity bill will be around 180,000 lower than in a traditional data center.


Other countries are paying attention to what Finland is doing. Helsinki Energy and Academica recently won a 2010 Green IT award for their data center design from the US-based Uptime Institute. The two companies already have another eco-friendly data center in the works that will be ten times larger than the one in the former bomb shelter. And they're looking for ways to make at least some of the technology work in cities that don't use large-scale water systems to heat and cool their homes.

其他国家也在关注芬兰在这方面的创举。位于美国的国际正常运行时间协会最近把2010绿色企业IT奖颁给了赫尔辛基能源公司和Academica,以表彰它们在数据中心设计方面的贡献。这两家公司正计划再建造一个环保数据中心,其规模将是现有防空洞数据中心的10 倍。同时,他们也正研究有效可行的方法,使这种技术的部分手段能在不使用大型供水系统进行供暖和制冷的城市中同样能得到应用。

2011-11-10 00:17 编辑:kuaileyingyu
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