Data centre and digital infrastructure company Equinix has announced the opening of its first Co-Innovation Facility (CIF) to test sustainable data centre innovations such as fuel cell technology and liquid cooling.
The new CIF is located in Equinix’s DC15 International Business Exchange (IBX) data centre at its Ashburn Campus in Washington D.C. in the United States. Part of Equinix’s data centre of the future initiative and innovation and sustainability strategy, the CIF enables leading partners including Bloom Energy, ZutaCore, Virtual Power Systems (VPS) and Natron to work with Equinix on testing core and edge technologies with a focus on reliability, efficiency, and building costs. The technologies include:
- Generator-less and UPS-less Data Centres (Bloom Energy) – Utilising on-site solid oxide fuel cells enables the data centre to generate redundant cleaner energy on-grid, and potentially eliminates the need for fossil fuel-powered generators and power-consuming Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) systems.
- High-Density Liquid Cooling (ZutaCore) – Highly efficient, direct-on-chip, waterless, two-phase liquid cooled rack systems, capable of cooling upwards of 100 kW per rack in a light, compact design. Eliminates risk of IT meltdown, minimises use of scarce resources including energy, land, construction and water, and dramatically shrinks the data centre footprint.
- Software-Defined Power (VPS) with cabinet-mounted Battery Energy Storage (Natron Energy) – Cabinet power management and battery energy storage system manages power draw and minimises power stranding to near zero percent, leading to a potential 30-50% improvement of power efficiency.
Equinix's sustainability targets
Discussing Equinix’s commitment to sustainability, Raouf Abdel, Executive Vice President of Global Operations at Equinix, said: "The data centre of the future must be sustainable. Equinix is committed to sustainability globally as evidenced by its target to be climate neutral across our business by 2030.
“We are well on our way with over 90 percent renewable energy coverage worldwide. And thanks to the work we're doing with partners at the CIF, we're continuing to make significant advancements in the way we design, build and operate our global platform, with high energy efficiency standards," he added.
Expressing enthusiasm for the partnership with Equinix, Udi Paret, President, ZutaCore, said: "ZutaCore is honoured to be featured at the CIF and partner with Equinix to advance the proliferation of liquid cooling on a global scale. Together we aim to prove that liquid cooling is an essential technology in realising fundamental business objectives for data centres of today and into the future. HyperCool liquid cooling solutions deliver unparalleled performance and sustainability benefits to directly address sustainability imperatives.
He went on to say that with little to no infrastructure change, it “consistently proves easy to deploy and maintain, environmentally friendly, economically attractive liquid cooling to support the highest core-count, high power and most dense requirements for a range of customer needs from the cloud to the edge."