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Town Expands To Boost Cooling For NSA Data Center

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the you-have-been-asimilated dept.

Hardware 112

1sockchuck writes "A substantial water supply is critical for most large data centers. A case in point: Officials in Bluffdale, Utah have agreed to annex land housing a new $1.2 billion data center for the National Security Agency. The move makes the NSA a higher priority customer for Bluffdale's water utility, which prevents its water supply from a potential cutoff in the event of a water shortage — which would be a problem, since water will be used extensively in the data center's cooling system. Many large data centers have been working to reduce their water use to make them more sustainable and reliable."

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112 comments

That's a great theory (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436572)

until the people don't get water. Then they will; just destroy the data center in some manner.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

XanC (644172) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436600)

Is it unusable for people after it's been through a datacenter? Why does using it to transfer heat around reduce its utility for drinking?

Re:That's a great theory (1)

Sonny Yatsen (603655) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436626)

The water is evaporated in the process of cooling the data center, apparently.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436666)

Gee, it's too bad that nothing can be done with steam. /sarcasm

Re:That's a great theory (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436752)

evaporation doesn't equal steam. However you're point is well taken. You would think they could recapture it.

Re:That's a great theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437320)

Sure, the water vapor could be recaptured to some degree of efficiency. Is the NSA going to pony up for a plant to power the giant condensers which would be needed?

Re:That's a great theory (1)

hawguy (1600213) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437598)

While it's technically possible to recover the water, If they're going to recondense the vapor back to water anyway then they wouldn't need fresh water from the city, it could be a closed cycle. But this would significantly increase their energy costs which is why they want to use water cooling in the first place.

Re:That's a great theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35438518)

What? Nobody's talking about forced condensing... you just have to capture the vapor and wait until nightfall, when it gets cold.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

hawguy (1600213) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439130)

What? Nobody's talking about forced condensing... you just have to capture the vapor and wait until nightfall, when it gets cold.

But where are you going to store all of this vapor while you wait for nightfall?

3MW = 10M BTU/hr (http://convert-to.com/conversion/power/convert-mw-to-btu-per-hr.html)
890 BTU/lb of water = 1900 BTU/kg (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evaporative_cooler#Physical_principles)

10M BTU/hr * 12 hours / 1900 BTU/kg = 63157 kg of water (16,000 gal)

pV=nRT

Assuming you don't compress the resulting vapor (which takes energy):

p = 1 atm
n = 63157000 g / 18g/mole = 3500000 moles
R=.082 atm*L/mole*K
T = 50 C + 273 = 323 K

V = nRT/p = 92 mllion L or 92 thousand cubic meters

Or a 3 story building that is about 100 meters on each side. please check my math, I did this in a hurry.

Whoops, just noticed that it was a 30MW datacenter, so multiply my numbers by 10 - so you need a 30 story building 100 meters on each side. Each floor of this containment building if it had floors) contains more floor space than the 100,000 square feet of the datacenter itself.

And this is assuming that you only need to accumulate 12 hours of vapor until nightfall lets you condense it, and that your night-time temperatures condense 100% of the vapor.

Are you sure it's practical to do this?

Re:That's a great theory (1)

jrumney (197329) | more than 3 years ago | (#35442128)

Something is seriously wrong with your volume calculation. At room temperature, 1 litre of water = 1kg. It expands a bit with temperature, but not by a factor of 1500 at 50degC.

Re:That's a great theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35438852)

But isn't there an effect, similar to nuclear reactors, that changes the composition of the water from H-20 to 10, after cools all those bits?

Re:That's a great theory (1)

xclr8r (658786) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439338)

Or they could use a geothermal system for cooling. Geo thermal is not always used for heating.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439784)

You would think they could recapture it.

They damn well better. Did you know that water vapor is up to ten times worse than CO2 as a greenhouse gas?

Re:That's a great theory (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437680)

Yeah, all they have to do is cool it until it condenses again. Too bad that's best done with an evaporative cooling system.

In less smart ass words, if they could do that practically, they wouldn't need all the water in the first place.

Re:That's a great theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35438698)

I beg to differ my friend, *anything* can be done with steam! We professors of steamology have known this for many years....

Professor Steamhead (Ninja High School)

My captcha > "distills"....how fitting.....

Re:That's a great theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35439720)

Water vapour from evaporative cooling towers is not steam.

Re:That's a great theory (2)

danlip (737336) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436772)

It's a shame they don't use a sealed system and just pass the water through. It would require much more water of course, but you could co-locate the data center with the water treatment plant and then just pass all the city's water through the data center to cool it and on to the consumers to drink, so no water would be wasted (although in this case I am not sure who would trust water that had been passed though an NSA controlled facility - if it was Google that would be OK because we know they do no evil :)

Re:That's a great theory (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437326)

The whole idea of cooling is that you do not have a closed system.

Re:That's a great theory (3, Insightful)

QuoteMstr (55051) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437384)

Closed with respect to the water, not the energy.

Automobile cooling system work just fine and don't consume fluid when operating properly. An open-loop system (where you lose the coolant) is cheaper and easier to build, but closed-loop systems work perfectly well.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

hawguy (1600213) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437662)

Which is why the parent poster was proposing an *open* solution - you pass the water through the facility once, then you send it to whoever wants to use luke-warm water and would have used large quantities of water anyway. Maybe a large laundry facility, chemical processing plant, etc.

It could be used for heating in the winter if there are nearby buildings that need to be heated, but the low temperature of the water (probably 130 degrees or less) means that it would take large pipes and a lot of energy from pumps to push it any significant distance. And, depending on the climate, it may only be useful for half the year.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

danlip (737336) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438158)

Heat pumps actually do really well at using barely warm water to heat buildings. You can even use cold water out of the ground (which is probably like 60 F, i.e. colder than you want you house to be but much warmer than the outside). Slightly warm water from the data center would be even better.

But I wasn't even thinking of that when I wrote the GGP post. If you are pumping it long distances through the ground to get to the destination there will not be much of a noticeable temp change by the time it reaches the destination.

Re:That's a great theory (2)

Hordeking (1237940) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438322)

If they ran the water through the system, and then to the customers, wouldn't they have to keep it separate from the secret parts of the facility, to prevent leaks?

Re:That's a great theory (1)

jbengt (874751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438672)

Conventional systems use refrigeration machines to provide cooling to the facility and reject the heat to water pumped through cooling towers. About 1% of the water evaporates in the cooling tower, and because of the cooling effect of the evaporation, the water approaches the ambient wet bulb temperature, which in Utah is significantly cooler than the dry bulb temperature (about 30F difference in hot weather). This means the refrigeration works against a lower temperature difference and is much more efficient. In fact, it's so dry in Utah (especially at the higher elevations) that you can often successfully provide air conditioning just by evaporating room temperature water directly into the air stream, cooling ti down to about 55F to 65F in all but the most hot and humid weather.
Trying to re-condense the water, as some others have suggested, would require an energy input, e.g. for refrigeration to cool the air below the dewpoint to get the water to condense. That defeats the whole purpose.
In order to reusing any not-evaporated water for some other purpose means dealing with the biocides, corrosion inhibiters, concentrated dissolved solids, and other fun things that come with the territory. If you piped in pure, drinkable water and used it in a once-through open system, your pipes and heat exchangers would not last very long, and the discharge water would still not be considered potable.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 3 years ago | (#35441210)

It's a shame they don't use a sealed system and just pass the water through. It would require much more water of course, but you could co-locate the data center with the water treatment plant and then just pass all the city's water through the data center to cool it and on to the consumers to drink, so no water would be wasted (although in this case I am not sure who would trust water that had been passed though an NSA controlled facility - if it was Google that would be OK because we know they do no evil :)

Or why not move to Alaska and just air cool?

Re:That's a great theory (3, Funny)

idontgno (624372) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436782)

Yeah, I'm guessing it's evaporative cooling towers or forced-air evaporators. That would work a treat in the summer time there. (I looked at a humidity trend chart for the town; summertime relative humidities are in the 20-25% range. It's the proverbial "dry heat" you hear about.)

I guess if the town wants its water they'll have to set up vaporator fields downwind of the cooling plant and buy astromech and protocol droids to maintain and program them.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438510)

As Slashdotters, I think we should be concerned about the vendor lock-in imposed by government purchases of moisture vaporators that speak a binary language.

Shouldn't we be having a three to four way flame war between those of us who want them to speak an ISO standardized XML based language, the plaintext 4 lyfe UNIX crew, JSON-spouting web2.0 kids, and that dude with the beard who insists that only lisp macros are equal to the task?

Re:That's a great theory (1)

rhook (943951) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436818)

Too bad they cannot capture it with a condenser and recycle it through the system, running it through radiators....

Re:That's a great theory (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436976)

The water is evaporated in the process of cooling the data center, apparently.

Let's not jump to conclusions. All they did was move the property "into" the city, so it would have the same priority as any other city water user:

"If it were not part of the city, the center would be considered a 'surplus priority' customer of the city, meaning its water supply would be cut if there were a shortage."

So, it appears they cannot operate with no water, but that doesn't mean they'll use an inordinate amount of water, either (like fabs do). I don't think *any* business would want to be without water.

Re:That's a great theory (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35436648)

They are afraid the water might be able to be reassembled in such a way as to show the data that the computers were processing when it cooled them.

For God's sake don't tell them I

Re:That's a great theory (1)

inkscapee (1994086) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436692)

They are afraid the water might be able to be reassembled in such a way as to show the data that the computers were processing when it cooled them.

For God's sake don't tell them I

Ha :) Wish I had some mod points for smart and funny! I seem to recall Intel or someone discovering a radical new inexpensive way to cool datacenters. They opened the windows.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436788)

"They opened the windows."
it completely depends on the equipment being used.

Re:That's a great theory (2)

The Grim Reefer2 (1195989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436884)

They opened the windows.

I'm sure Steve Ballmer would throw a chair at you for suggesting they open Windows.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

Miseph (979059) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437258)

Either that or execasm over being able to claim that "Intel has made revolutionary advances in data center operation and efficiency based specifically on using windows".

Re:That's a great theory (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438530)

You obviously couldn't tell what was being processed(given that most chips are under heat-spreaders these days, you'd need modestly fiddly hardware to even get a rough heatmap of the die with physical access to the system); but it would be interesting to know if they consider how much load they are currently subject to to be sensitive information...

Cynically, I'd tend to assume that if a CPU falls idle, they just tap more phone lines until it peaks again; but if that isn't actually the case, satellite sensors that could pick up IR or atmospheric water vapor concentrations could, in principle, get an approximate sense of the datacenter load over time, which might correlate with level of NSA interest in something.

Re:That's a great theory (3, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436786)

Is it unusable for people after it's been through a datacenter? Why does using it to transfer heat around reduce its utility for drinking?

Depends what part of the cooling loop it ends up being used in. Because you really don't want things like galvanic corrosion or organic goo damaging your cooling system, cooling water that spends an extended period of time in the cooling loop is likely to be pretty nasty. Additives, biocides, dissolved metals, etc. Tasty.

Water that just flows past a heat exchanger into which the main cooling loop dumps its heat is probably just fine. Water used for evaporative cooling should end up being nice and distilled(assuming that there isn't too much unpleasantness in the local air); but the percentage you can re-capture in Utah's climate may or may not be all that exciting...

Re:That's a great theory (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437242)

until the people don't get water. Then they will; just destroy the data center in some manner.

It's too bad that they can't expand the water system in some manner. Then every time the town residents have somewhat low water pressure, they wouldn't have to destroy the data center and endanger US security.

Re:That's a great theory (1)

arivanov (12034) | more than 3 years ago | (#35442484)

It is the datacenter's fault.

It is producing enough hot water to heat half of the town and is dumping that in the nearby river instead of establishing good "neighbourly relations".

All your water belong to us now. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35436592)

What a timely story to read as I'm preparing my slave taxes for the uberlords. You go guys! May I pour you a drink whilst you scan me for thoughtcrime?

In other news.... (1)

SniperX (136257) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436594)

After the location of their top-secret data center was made public, NSA has decide to auction off their data center on Ebay.

"PARTIALLY USED. EX-TOP SECRET DATA CENTER. WITH NEW WATER SUPPLY NO RESERVE!!!!"

Re:In other news.... (1)

Dayofswords (1548243) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436658)

*bids $0.01*

Make a hotspring resort out of it (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436662)

If they do the plumbing right, all they need to do is channel the hot water into a facility for rest and relaxation. For that matter, it could also be used in other ways. There has got to be a better way than this to make use of this hot water.

Better -- stop the NSA domestic spying.

Re:Make a hotspring resort out of it (1)

Zapotek (1032314) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436824)

I'm confused...you're saying it's OK to put a spa in the middle of a closed loop water cooling system which is vital to an NSA datacenter? o.O
How 'bout you plug all the servers in a hub and then pull an Ethernet cable for the spa visitors to have some Top Secret data to read while they're relaxing?

Re:Make a hotspring resort out of it (1)

wmbetts (1306001) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436952)

You sir are an IDEA MAN. We need more people like you working at the upper levels of government!

Re:Make a hotspring resort out of it (1)

modecx (130548) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437466)

Better yet, we have a party and lure...err, invite all of our favorite politicians with hookers and blow...uhhh, delicious cake, at the SPA and then we could unbolt a few lively servers to give them company...

Re:Make a hotspring resort out of it (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 3 years ago | (#35442318)

it adds transparency to the loop..

Re:Make a hotspring resort out of it (5, Funny)

fleebait (1432569) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437050)

If they do the plumbing right, all they need to do is channel the hot water into a facility for rest and relaxation. For that matter, it could also be used in other ways. There has got to be a better way than this to make use of this hot water.

Better -- stop the NSA domestic spying.

A significant problem with making a hotspring resort fed by an NSA datacenter is the extreme danger imposed by an inadvertant WikiLeak, and it's effect on the local infrastructure. Liquid NSA data running all over Utah might have unknown effects on the local environment.

Re:Make a hotspring resort out of it (1)

Jesus_666 (702802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439922)

Known side-effects of exposure to liquid classified data include knowing too much and extradition to Sweden.

Re:Make a hotspring resort out of it (1)

sl3xd (111641) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439692)

There's no hot water to be had. The air is so dry that the water evaporates into the air. The air cools substantially in the process.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evaporative_cooler [wikipedia.org]

I grew up with one of these - they work great in the desert. They cost a fraction of what it costs to get the same cooling from an air conditioning unit.

They also use misters for outdoor restaurants - spray an aerosol of water into the air above the guests, and it evaporates completely before it touches anybody. In the process, the temperature drops 20-30 degrees F, which makes an intolerably hot patio into a comfortable experience.

Better -- stop the NSA domestic spying.
There's no significant opposition to what the NSA is doing in Utah, and thus no negative stigma to the workers. It's sort of a win-win for the feds.

And as far as water usage overall: The biggest water use issue in Utah is typical suburbia: Lots of yards with lawns - covered with thirsty kentucky bluegrass.

Residents are already used to rationing water - if only on the level of being forbidden to water their lawns.

Utah water supply (3)

Gohtar (1829140) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436676)

Every year us Utahns have to deal with our officials telling us there is not enough water to water our lawns or wash our cars and if we keep doing so there will not be enough water for our houses. Our main supply comes from the snow we get in our mountains. So yes we are limited. Our reservoirs have been slowly draining the past few years. Now we have to feed the NSA? And they have priority? Great.... I say give them my toilet water!

Re:Utah water supply (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436812)

One does wonder why the NSA chose that particular climate to build a big, water-hungry datacenter...(and what inducements the town leadership accepted for the... good fortune... of having its water allocated to the NSA first and its citizens second.)

Re:Utah water supply (4, Interesting)

Isaac-1 (233099) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436894)

Can we say PORK

Re:Utah water supply (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437614)

I was gonna say 'Mormoun PORK', but that just seems.... odd.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

lewko (195646) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439878)

Not without offending al-Qaeda.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437032)

When this was mentioned on Slashdot before, it was suggested that the state of Utah was chosen because of its foreign language expertise in the form of Mormon missionaries. It's also widely believed that the majority of FBI agents (and possibly those of other agencies) are either Catholic or Mormon, both demoninations of Christianity reknowned for their pedophilia and/or polygamy.

In response to your grandparent, we in California deal with this water shortage scare bullshit all the time. They tell us constantly that we have to conserve and install flushless urinals in our buildings. San Diego Metro is trying to shove a 19.7 percent increase in water rates up our asses. Meanwhile, in North County(the part of San Diego where all the rich conservative Christians and Jews live) there is have lush, rainforest-esque vegitation irrigated all over the neighborhoods, medians, and on both sides of the freeways.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

benjamindees (441808) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437364)

Do you suppose there might be some fundamental philosophical difference between catholics, mormons and jews that might justify higher per-capita resource consumption on the part of the latter?

Re:Utah water supply (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437038)

One does wonder why the NSA chose that particular climate to build a big, water-hungry datacenter...(and what inducements the town leadership accepted for the... good fortune... of having its water allocated to the NSA first and its citizens second.)

I can't speak to anything political about the town leadership, but as for location, I suspect it has something to do with cheap electricity. I live 10-15 miles from Bluffdale, and our power rates are around $0.07-0.09 USD per kWh. I think it's the same power company (http://www.rockymountainpower.net/).

Re:Utah water supply (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437520)

You misunderstood... it's the National, not local Security Agency.

If government won't acknowledge global climate change as a factor in national security, then the only reason they might end up with a responsibly designed facility that minimizes the ecological footprint is chance.

Pogo was here...

Re:Utah water supply (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437958)

I was told that it was built here due to the large number of people in Utah that speak multiple languages from serving LDS missions in foreign countries. Multilingual people are great for helping the NSA spy on other countries :) Keep in mind that this isn't fact, just what I heard, though it does seem to make sense.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

sl3xd (111641) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439698)

Two words: Evaporative Cooling

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evaporative_cooler [wikipedia.org]

Far more cost-effective than power hungry air conditioning units.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | more than 3 years ago | (#35441540)

One does wonder why the NSA chose that particular climate to build a big, water-hungry datacenter...

You mean a climate of monoculture, compliant, unquestioning, god-fearing worker bees? That kind of climate?

Re:Utah water supply (1)

rhook (943951) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436868)

Maybe you should try growing native vegetation in your yards instead of trying to grow grasses which are not native to the environment? You would use much less water and not have to worry so much about water shortages.

Re:Utah water supply (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437024)

Unfortunately, the native plants are not nearly as much fun to have in your yard as grass is. What we need is a species of Kentucky Blue Grass that is drought-resistant...

Re:Utah water supply (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437234)

I live in Utah. Our small front yard is a combination of wood-chips and plants that do not require water. Our larger back yard has grass, which requires watering during the hottest months. Foregoing grass sounds like a good idea until you realize that a patch of blazing hot, dusty, arid desert interspersed with stunted oak-brush, clumpy dry grasses and cacti is useless for most typical back yard activities.

So don't live in the desert, you say? You might be on to something there.

Re:Utah water supply (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437818)

I live way up north where it is also difficult to maintain my golf-course backyard. The dome and heating alone is costing a fortune!

Re:Utah water supply (4, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436946)

Why do you have lawns then?
Having lawns in places that would need a lawn to be watered is a braindead idea.

Re:Utah water supply (4, Funny)

swanzilla (1458281) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437076)

Why do you have lawns then? Having lawns in places that would need a lawn to be watered is a braindead idea.

Now get off my lawn.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

saider (177166) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437154)

Because they have old people and homeowners associations. Gotta keep that lawn emerald green or face a stiff fine.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

rahvin112 (446269) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437186)

Yep absolutely braindead. It's much smarter to allow all that fresh water to flow into a lifeless (brine shrimp don't count) inland salt water body where it promptly evaporates. Absolutely fucking brilliant I say!

In fact it's so smart you could be considered a zombie!

Re:Utah water supply (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437236)

If only we could have more than two possible outcomes to this problem. If only we could somehow not waste the water on grass and not let it flow into the salt lake. It is purely foolish to think there are more than two possible choices to any problem though.

That was sarcasm and you are an idiot. The water could well be stored in any manner of ways that do not require dumping it on your lawn.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437968)

Any reason the NSA can't use the water in the salt lake for cooling?

Re:Utah water supply (1)

Beezlebub33 (1220368) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438328)

If it's evaporative, then yes, you'd end up with a clogged system very quickly. If it's simply an open system and they are dumping the water, then it's possible. The Navy has used salt water cooling for a while now. Still, it's a bit of a pain because salt water is a pain to work with and tends to corrode things. It's possible, but more costly.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

dwillden (521345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439634)

Maybe the 40 miles between the Great Salt Lake and the location of the NSA facility.

This ain't the Sahara, FFS. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35438024)

If only we could have more than two possible outcomes to this problem. If only we could somehow not waste the water on grass and not let it flow into the salt lake. It is purely foolish to think there are more than two possible choices to any problem though.

I live in Salt Lake City, and the sump pump in my basement has been going crazy in the last couple days. Snow melt and a high water table, you see. It does get dry in the late summer.

Bluffdale is a little ways south of here, between the large Utah Lake and even larger Great Salt Lake. This whole valley is a flood-plain.

Perhaps one of these additional choices you allude to could be considered by folks who know what and where they are talking about? That was not sarcasm.

Re:Utah water supply (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35438244)

well if you just incorporated a giant dome over your neighbourhood, it wouldn't evapourate as quickly, and could be recaptured.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437198)

Why do you have lawns then?

If you don't have a lawn, you can't yell at kids to get off it.

Having lawns in places that would need a lawn to be watered is a braindead idea.

I'd just call it a very stupid way of squandering scarce resources.

Re:Utah water supply (1)

ben_kelley (234423) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437362)

Everything he said, except that I don't think the zombies would be too worried about their lawns. Unless you mean that the brains might become the scarce resources?

Re:Utah water supply (1)

TheReaperD (937405) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437668)

Unless you mean that the brains might become the scarce resources?

They already are. Haven't you been able to tell from all the cable news and reality shows?

Re:Utah water supply (1)

hercubus (755805) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439314)

Why do you have lawns then? Having lawns in places that would need a lawn to be watered is a braindead idea.

Not that much trouble really, a small matter of building a system to distrubute water -- think municipal water supply. Or would thinking be too much trouble?

Jesus, we've descended to the point where a minor engineering problem elicits meh, why bother?

Idiocracy

Re:Utah water supply (1)

drsquare (530038) | more than 3 years ago | (#35440346)

A water supply is not a 'minor engineering problem'. Why do idiots on the Internet think they have all the answers?

Re:Utah water supply (4, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436982)

It's ok. I the worst case, the data center is only one backhoe away from not needing water.

Warm globally, Cool locally..? (1)

Bob_Who (926234) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436688)

...Or just act really cool locally, totally incognito - a future so byte you gotta wear shades..

Berita terbaru (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35436840)

like this blog....
http://ardi91ultras.blogspot.com

Lake Superior (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35436860)

I still don't understand why people put data centers in stupid places. Lake Superior is deep and cold and can sink more therms than you can possibly make. But, no, let's put our new data center someplace where water is at a premium and then tell everybody about it.

Re:Lake Superior (3, Insightful)

jandrese (485) | more than 3 years ago | (#35436922)

Is Lake Superior in your congressional district? No? Then STFU.

Re:Lake Superior (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437728)

Not only that, in the Lake Superior area, it's cold enough you could use open-air cooling half the year.

MICROSOFT leaving Phone Space (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35436918)

Whodathunk that? It can't compete. Frankly, it's so incompetent it only follows. What a waste of human effort. KinII is right.

Do I smell Orrin Hatch? (4, Insightful)

MarkvW (1037596) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437036)

Why would you locate something that demands cooling resources in the MIDDLE OF A DESERT?
Because an influential Senator wants the facility there, perhaps?

Re:Do I smell Orrin Hatch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437964)

This is common practice for data centers. They prefer dry climates, with very low chances of any natural disasters.

There are TONS of data centers in Phoenix due to the lack of anything bad being able to happen(outside of a dust storm, oh noes).

Re:Do I smell Orrin Hatch? (1)

misplacedonline (1853420) | more than 3 years ago | (#35441090)

"Why would you locate something that demands cooling resources in the MIDDLE OF A DESERT?" Because it's really, really close to Area 51. All the aliens that live there have offered to fix the Utah water supply by bringing in icebergs from Pluto. Orrin Hatch is one of the aliens.

too reliant on .gov & .god? are they even real (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437064)

thou shalt not..., unless...you have the almighty's special dispensation & hopefully, some extreme unction in the bank. there's even more rumors of genetically altered nazi mutants being seen flying through the air (out of windows) with rats in their mouths & flames coming out of their butts.

there's almost no accounting for some things. for us, there is.

Interesting choice of location (1)

hendersj (720767) | more than 3 years ago | (#35437192)

I hadn't actually heard about this data center (I live in Utah), but there's a nagging little voice in the back of my head that's wondering if the NSA will hire prisoners from the nearby state prison, also located in Bluffdale.

Of course such an idea is ridiculous, but it's funny that the town will boast both an NSA data center and the state prison.

Re:Interesting choice of location (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438008)

Well, it'll save the NSA spooks a long bus ride when the revolution comes.

Re:Interesting choice of location (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438576)

John "Iran-Contra" Poindexter would like to remind you that felony convictions and employment in the shadowy national security bureaucracy are hardly incompatible...

Why! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35437340)

It's not the location, but, the distance.

So far from the headquarters has GOT to make their data link security awesome. Maybe. How do you pay for a quantum encryption link from....Bluffdale. Maybe, it is a joke -- NSA in BLUFF-dale.

Tax dollars at work.

Water users (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35438432)

WTF Happened to recirculating water cooling towers.And heat exchangers.

It makes complete sense! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35438728)

Reasons why you put a NSA data center near Salt Lake City.

1. The internet backbone for the western US and pacific lines pass through Salt Lake City.
2. In addition to the internet backbone being closeby there are large amounts of unused fiber optic cables in the area from previous government projects that will provide the needed bandwidth very cheaply.
3. Due to certain religious organizations in the area, there are a large amount of U.S. Citizens who are fluent in of the worlds languages, in addition most of them are very loyal to their country.
4. Also due to the religious organizations in the area many people live a lifestyle that makes various government clearances easier to obtain.
5. The local population is highly educated. Adobe, Intel, and many other large tech companies are moving operations to Utah for the same reason.
6. Power is cheap. Utah produces far more power than it consumes, thus electricity is cheap and this will be a power hungry facility.
7. Local labor is cheaper than the national average.

This is the short list but you get the point. It really does make sense to put it in Utah.

maybe a stupid question (1)

argStyopa (232550) | more than 3 years ago | (#35438744)

...but are data centers really consuming water?

If they're using it for cooling, I doubt they're generating temps that actually evaporate the water...aren't they just essentially heating it and then returning it to the water table?

Re:maybe a stupid question (1)

sl3xd (111641) | more than 3 years ago | (#35439712)

They really are consuming water:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evaporative_cooler [wikipedia.org]

Basically, evaporative coolers blow air through a wet 'sponge' like material. They constantly drip water on the sponge. The air evaporates the water, and cools off 20-30 degrees F in the process. Far cheaper than air conditioning units, far less power used, more 'green', etc.

The air is so dry to begin with that even with the water evaporating into the air, the humidity rarely tops 40-50%.

Re:maybe a stupid question (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 3 years ago | (#35442338)

I was coming to ask the same question as the GP.

In this situation it seems that it might be a good idea to go for a solution that uses more power but consumes less water. Utah has lots of sun and wide open plains right? Seems like solar or wind power might be good choices.

But you can see why they chose evaporative cooling when you consider the environment. A desert-like environment is the worst possible place to put a data center, if they were smart they'd put it by a shore or lake, with a heat exchanger running deep into the frigid water.

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