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The Fjord-Cooled Data Center

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the norwegian-blue dept.

Earth 195

1sockchuck writes "A new data center project in Norway plans to use a fjord-powered cooling system, drawing cold water from an adjacent fjord to cool data halls. The fjord provides a ready supply of water at 8 degrees C (46 degrees F), eliminating the need for an energy-hungry chiller. The Green Mountain Data Center joins a small but growing number of data centers are slashing their cooling costs by using the environment as their chiller, tapping nearby lakes, wells and even the Baltic Sea."

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Queue the screams of hysteria (1, Insightful)

ErikTheRed (162431) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456068)

from environmentalists over warming the fjord water in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

no-body (127863) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456124)

Sheesh - as if anything would mattter at all at this point

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (5, Insightful)

jhoegl (638955) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457134)

I wonder if someone would calculate how much power/heat would be needed to raise the temperature enough to affect it.
I would be more worried about the marine life being affected more than the heat generated.
And speaking of marine life, remember how environmentalists were worried about such things as salmon and dams?
Remember how environmentalists are worried about eroding soil and hurricanes?
You know what... look at the history of what "environmentalists" have saved us from, and then come back and say something.
If it wasnt for them, we would be drinking firewater(literal firewater), sucking in coal ash, and dealing with randomly placed toxins.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (3, Funny)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456126)

Won't someone please think of the norwegian blues?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

rossdee (243626) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456168)

Next up, a project to cool servers by having Norwegian Blue Parrots flapping their wings.

(However it won't work with dead parrots)

Maybe swallows would be better

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456178)

Oblig:

African or European?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456580)

A reference, obligatory or otherwise, is usually off-topic. Everyone in the thread is making Monty Python jokes. It's not an Obligatory anything.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456756)

We're just having a bit of fun, we didn't expect some sort of Spanish inquisition.

(sorry, I agree that it's annoying but at least it isn't that shitty comic)

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

Divebus (860563) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456820)

It's time for a car reference.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

Whiteox (919863) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457374)

I think he wants AN ARGUMENT you silly bunt!

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (2)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456810)

Speaking of obligatory references... if we have a car analogy in this thread, can we make sure that the car is a fjord please?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38457048)

Would you settle for Fjat?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

isama (1537121) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457346)

But they aren't dead, they are sleeping!

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456594)

Remarkable bird - the Norwegian Blue, innit?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

tywjohn (1676686) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456130)

Isn't that what they mean by global warming?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (4, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456180)

*screams of hysteria*

But more seriously, that is a problem with environmentalists -- they can't separate the forest from the trees (I'm only being slightly sarcastic here). From what I've been able to tell by talking to these 'greenies', any environmental impact is bad. It's not enough to be carbon neutral, or conserve energy, save the whales, or whatever else is currently in vogue in their movement. It is a political movement that is based on a sliding scale of "purity". I can easily see one of them extolling the virtues of living in a house that has no electricity, is built entirely out of clay, and they don't cook their food (because fire releases carbon). What's worse, they feel guilty about having any modern conveniences, and so they try to buy indulgences like "carbon credits" or "EVA cars" ... which when you look into the total lifecycle of the vehicle and it's total environmental impact, you don't wind up any better off than a conventional car. A lot of environmentalism is just a shell game... it's moving the responsibility around so they can claim they're "carbon neutral" or whatever while someone else (usually the government, or some corporation) are the bad guys.

The bottom line is, the problem with the movement is that they can't see that progress towards environmental goals are only achievable by being economically competitive. I mean, everybody right now is going crazy about living "grid free". But the problem isn't the grid. The 'grid' is just a collection of wires and transformers. It's the management and production of that resource that is the problem; If the environmentalists wanted to "save the planet", they'd come up with a way to transport electricity over very long distances with minimal losses. That, right there, is the kind of tech we need to reduce our dependence on coal, oil, etc. Until we can cheaply move energy to where it's needed on demand, we're stuck with dino fuel because it's the only thing with a high energy density that can be built right now -- you can't build a nuclear power plant anywhere in this country right now even if you wanted to... and even if you could, nobody wants it near a city, which is where it needs to be to be useful.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (3, Insightful)

scotch (102596) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456260)

Who are these environmentalists you know who hold these positions? Someone serious or some stupid cunt you went to school with?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456564)

Oh, it's your standard straw man extreme environmentalist. It's pretty popular to refer to them these days, but it's extraordinarily rare to observe them in the wild. I'm sure they do exist somewhere, but I've never met one personally.

They remind me of white crows [cornell.edu] -- rare and not typical of the species.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456898)

Just read all the posts here dumb shit. They are all right in front of you.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (3, Funny)

swalve (1980968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456592)

The environmentalists invented by Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456792)

Just pay fucking attention and you'll find them easy enough.

Fuck, your post was just another retard saying *Citation Needed*

Dumbshit.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456288)

So basically, you find problems with their way of life to make you feel better about yourself. Congrats.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456346)

Sounds like most environmental groups these days. You hear the one about bananas lately?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456456)

works for "them"

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (5, Insightful)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456552)

You're grouping environmentalists all in to one bucket. It doesn't work that way.

I am an avid environmentalist. According to you, I don't support Nuclear power in my backyard. Yet, I actually support it. Newer technologies mitigate a lot of the safety concerns and we can figure out better ways to store waste and even better technologies that yield less waste.

As for the transport of electricity I think there already is an excellent method. Aluminum Gallium power sources produce hydrogen from water and all you would need to do is ship them back to a Nuclear power plant where it would be vastly more efficient to remove the Oxygen to recondition the power source.

That's a pretty progressive idea.

I am not against the whole cooling from the fjord idea, but you would have to be a complete idiot not to realize that an environmental impact study would need to be conducted if the hot water was being put right back in the fjord. Of course they don't have to do that at all. They can just use passive heat exchangers with the surrounding air instead. Better yet, use the heat for surrounding buildings, offices, etc. or even convert it back into energy. So many more options than just dumping it back in the fjord.

There is a difference between "screaming hysteria" and "gee what happens when we raise the water temperatures around the datacenter a couple degrees?".

Economically competitive is just a cop out. What it really means, is that you have a limited commitment towards change. In my personal view, which has had heated debates, we are fucked already. Leave economics out of it and make the hard decisions now. That does mean start building as many nuclear reactors as possible right now because they are the most immediate solution to massive amounts of power generation that can be used immediately for heating, cooling, industry, etc.

Short term pain == Long term gain. Problem is nobody wants to sacrifice and any environmentalist that proposes serious sacrifice is labeled a hypocrite (appropriate in some situations) or just plain crazy.

As for off the grid people, all you can really do in the end is control your own actions and voice your opinions and ideas cogently and passionately and hope it helps. Those people you are denigrating are doing the sacrificing because it is what they can do. I sacrifice as much as possible, and writing on a laptop does not make me a hypocrite.

P.S - It's not so black and white when you label people. I propose extreme austerity measures but also very aggressive and progressive changes.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456634)

You're grouping environmentalists all in to one bucket. It doesn't work that way

Funny, it seems to work EXACTLY that way when you turn it around. To "progressives", ALL conservatives are backwards, redneck, bible-thumping, bigoted, homophobic, anti-education, anti-science, anti-choice, "with us or against us", gun-brandishing, moralistic, holier-than-thou, "them thar foreigners took err jerrrbs!", neo-fascist, poor-hating, classist, earth-killing, corporate ass-kissers.

But I understand. It's OK to paint those you don't agree with using the same brush. All that matters is that you feel good about yourself no matter what.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38457224)

So you responded to his post with an ad hominem attack.

Funny that. Couldn't have seen that coming at all.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (3, Interesting)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456768)

an environmental impact study would need to be conducted if the hot water was being put right back in the fjord. Of course they don't have to do that at all. They can just use passive heat exchangers with the surrounding air instead

Up to that point I suspected you knew what you were writing about, but this is where you've dropped out of your depth. Avoiding the problem of hot water in the Fjord can be done even with GW heat sources by using a combination of holding dams and distributed outlet pipes - that's the sort of thing that's done with nuclear power plants on rivers. The "passive heat exchangers" would be cooling towers, they come in small sizes as well as large and you can see the small ones as part of large air conditioning installations - however the entire point of siting next to a Fjord is to have cold water and a really huge heatsink! The water goes through and the surrounding environment is not measurably heated up if it's done properly.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (2)

Rei (128717) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456846)

The aluminum/gallium/hydrogen cycle is incredibly inefficient and expensive. But don't let that get in the way of the "neato" factor. :P

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

Whiteox (919863) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457440)

Hmmm... I may just put a patent on that.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (3, Informative)

neyla (2455118) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457040)

Why would venting heat to the atmosphere be unproblematic but venting it to seawater be potentially problematic ?

RennesÃy isn't some deep-and-narrow inlet, infact it's hardly in a fjord at all, but more akin to in open ocean. Have a look at the map: http://g.co/maps/ucfvs [g.co]

Heating the ocean itself by dumping waste heat, would take *tremendous* amounts of power, many orders of magnitude more energy than any data-center could possibly use.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (2)

no-body (127863) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456616)

*screams of hysteria*

But more seriously, that is a problem with environmentalists -- they can't separate the forest from the trees.

Hey smartypants, anyone can?

Polititians, religious leaders, billionairs - the military perhaps?

A European Court judment determined that airlines need to buy carbon credits for 15 % of their carbon (CO2?) emissions.
Prudent step? Maybe, just watch what will happen.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456650)

But more seriously,

No you are not serious because you don't know what you are talking about. Your comment reads like a rambling complaint of some person you met who claimed to be an environmentalist. You conflate environmentalism with renewable energy and neglect to realize that most of the major positive environmental progress in the last 30 years has not been due to economic competitiveness, but rather due to the scientific realization that human activity has adverse effects on the environment and human health. GET IT? Most environmentalists I know are scientists who work unglamorously behind the scenes to identify and characterize threats that certain human activities pose to the environment and human health. And, unfortunately, many are simply unwilling to strongly advocate for their issues because the pressure they face by a bunch of wildly ignorant citizens with wildly misinformed views on science and environmentalism. Now, carry on with your ill informed diatribe on electricity infrastructure and everybody's obsession with off-grid living.

blah blah blah (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456684)

Changes that render the environment unfit for human survival will force us to develop such technologies as practical biodomes, multi-level indoor farms that can produce plenty of food, cost-effective vat-grown meat, power sources that can run all of this gadgetry, and so on.

We need all of that in order to colonize other planets, since the majority of them have environments that are a lot more toxic to us than ours will ever be.

And, obviously, we need to colonize other planets in order to ensure the long-term survival of our species.

So, I say, pollute for the greater good!

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456762)

Brilliant. Just brilliant.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (2)

fotoguzzi (230256) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456854)

Is there a good introductory text on total lifecycle considerations?

That is, 55-year-old cars are driving around Cuba, spewing last-mile pollution* into the air. Somewhere else, one Cuban Buick could be represented by ~8-10 "new" cars over the years (each of which would have simultaneously served as used cars for someone else for a while). Somewhere else might be a planned-city built from nothing, but based around long-lasting mass transportation vehicles.

* Please spread this term around if it is not already in circulation.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (2)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457120)

*screams of hysteria* But more seriously, that is a problem with environmentalists

Really seriously, this is a problem with assholes who put words in the mouths of environmentalists, and pillory them for positions they never took.

And to the original original asshole who started this thread: the word is "cue" not queue.

Robocop 2 (1)

Toe, The (545098) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456370)

From the news [imdb.com] :

Casey Wong: On the international scene, the Amazon nuclear facility has blown its stack, irradiating the world's largest rain forest. Environmentalists are calling it a disaster.
Jess Perkins: But don't they always.

(Wondering if you'll understand the joke here...)

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1, Interesting)

AfroTrance (984230) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456400)

Releasing warm water back into the ocean could disrupt the local environment. Every company should minimise impact on the environment where possible. That is the rational thing to do, not something only 'hysterical environmentalists' support.

For example, the area might be a breeding ground for fish. Should they impact the level of fish in the sea just so a data centre can reduce their power bill? It seems almost all of Norway's energy comes from hydro, so it isn't reducing greenhouse emissions.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (3, Interesting)

danbob999 (2490674) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456478)

Ever heard the expression "drop in the ocean"?

This time it is to be taken literally too. Warm water of a data center won't change the temperature of the ocean at all.
But any way, what is the other option? The heat has to go somewhere. Warming the air (that will then warm the ocean)?

As long as you go deep enough and that the water is circulating in that fjord, there is no negative environmental impact.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (2)

swalve (1980968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456602)

Exactly. A nuclear power plant can mess up local environmental temperatures. Not a data center putting out a few hundred thousand BTU.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456788)

Even if that's done properly the water temperature just beyond the outlets doesn't have to go up enough to matter. There can be more than one outlet pipe and water can cool by moving slowly through holding dams (or tanks for something this small).

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1, Troll)

Rei (128717) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456860)

Fjörd != Ocean
Fjörd == Connected to Ocean
Connected to Ocean != Deep ocean
Fjörd == Heatflow bottleneck
Return environmental_study.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (4, Informative)

HopefulIntern (1759406) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457402)

Don't use umlaut on the word "fjord". We don't in Norway and neither should you. In fact, umlaut are not even used in Norwegian. If you are thinking of ø or æ or å they are Norwegian vowels but do not apply in this case.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (4, Insightful)

AfroTrance (984230) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456880)

Warm water of a data center won't change the temperature of the ocean at all.

Not the whole ocean, but as I said, it could affect the local environment.

But any way, what is the other option?

Did I say they shouldn't put warm water in the ocean?

What should be done, in all circumstances, is a study on the environmental impact. Such a thing may find (for example) that the original design releases the water in a secluded shallow bay where there is little circulation. As you said, a simple fix would be to make a longer pipe and release the water in deeper water, where there are stronger currents.

Environmentalism is not about doing nothing because well everything affects the environment. It is doing the optimal thing based on scientific evidence.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456468)

Who is worried about the fjord water?

I'm worried about thawing the frozen Viking Longships and unleashing a fleet of the more brutal berzerkers ever known upon this century.

How will we handle them? We don't have knights anymore?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456492)

That won't happen. It's not in the united states. It's norway.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (4, Insightful)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456498)

It IS something to take into consideration. And it doesn't even have to be some enviro-nut who is tying himself to trees to save the endangered fern.

Here's how it works in reality: many fjords are home to commercial fishing and aquaculture. All those species are adapted to cold water and don't do well in warm water. What happens if a data center warms the water around the effluent by a couple of degrees? Cold-water fish, shrimp, clams move away and the people who depend on them have to move with them. It's probably fine if there's just one data center in the Fjord, and the warming is highly localized. maybe a few hundred square meter of surface area. But what if there's more? What if there are ten data centers in the Fjord? Or other industries in need of cooling? Suddenly the entire fjord warms, and it's not only the fish, shrimp and clams that are gone, but the livelihood of the people in the area.

Environmentalism isn't about building absolutely nothing anywhere near anyone. It's making sure that what you build allows others to still live in the area in the foreseeable future and without having to dramatically adapt their lifestyle. Sometimes, it means that a data center using fjord water is ok. Sometimes it means that a data center using fjord water is not ok.

Yeah, life is full of grey and subtilities and hard decisions that aren't black and white. Sorry to disappoint you.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0, Flamebait)

MoellerPlesset2 (1419023) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456660)

Here's how it works in reality: many fjords are home to commercial fishing and aquaculture. All those species are adapted to cold water and don't do well in warm water. What happens if a data center warms the water around the effluent by a couple of degrees? Cold-water fish, shrimp, clams move away and the people who depend on them have to move with them. It's probably fine if there's just one data center in the Fjord, and the warming is highly localized. maybe a few hundred square meter of surface area. But what if there's more? What if there are ten data centers in the Fjord? Or other industries in need of cooling? Suddenly the entire fjord warms, and it's not only the fish, shrimp and clams that are gone, but the livelihood of the people in the area.

Except that's not reality. That's your own speculative fantasy. A retarded one. If fish couldn't handle a few degrees warmer water, they'd die in the summer. Also: The water is not vented to the same thermocline it came from.

In any case, reality is what research and empirical evidence says it is, not what you can imagine and think is plausible. It so happens that there's been decades of research in Norway's neighbor, Sweden, on the environmental effects of the major-river's-worth of 10 C heated cooling water, which the three Forsmark nuclear reactors put out into an enclosed basin in the Baltic. That's far more than an entire district-cooling network would put out. In fact, one of the Forsmark reactors alone puts out more waste heat than the 30-something district-cooling grids that already exist in Sweden.

The results of the research [fiskeriverket.se] , performed by the government agency for fisheries (not the nuclear industry) actually indicates that, on balance, fish growth is actually promoted, as are many other species of birds etc.

Yeah, life is full of grey and subtilities and hard decisions that aren't black and white. Sorry to disappoint you.

Sorry to dissappoint you: But one of those subtleties is that speculation is not a substitute for actual study, and that those "subtilities" you speak of should include the possibility that environmental impact can actually be a net positive.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (5, Informative)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456748)

The results of the research, performed by the government agency for fisheries (not the nuclear industry) actually indicates that, on balance, fish growth is actually promoted, as are many other species of birds etc.

Opportunistic species appeared in very high abundances while species with more
narrow tolerances decreased or disappeared. The total production of macrofauna increased.

...

Total benthic biomass stayed at a high level in the Biotest basin up to 1989,
but during the later years there has been a general decrease in both
biomass and abundance of most common species and the risk that fish food
production is becoming critically low is evident. The scenario â" increasing
fish biomass â" heavy grazing â" benthic fauna collapse â" starving fish â" was
discussed already when the studies started in the Biotest basin. Today, ten
years later, we can see the first signs that these misgivings turn out to be justified.

Yeah, not quite exactly as you portrayed it. Plenty of other stuff in that report that is far, far more ambiguous than you made it out to be, like growth retardation and increased mortality rates for perch. There may be more perch but they are of suckier quality.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457252)

I love it when people cite studies, but fail to read them. It's fun.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (3, Informative)

inpher (1788434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456992)

The results of the research [fiskeriverket.se] , performed by the government agency for fisheries (not the nuclear industry) actually indicates that, on balance, fish growth is actually promoted, as are many other species of birds etc.

In fact that very report says that in the short term opportunistic species will rise at the cost of the more vulnerable species and in the long run all species (biomass) will decrease

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456582)

it's how many many powerplants cool their steam after it's been through the turbines

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456604)

So if the environmentalists block it the datacenter will be pining for the fjords then?

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456728)

You're a fucking idiot.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456746)

If the environmentalists had somehow been in charge of overseeing human development, we never would have gotten past the Paleolithic. I'm all for not dumping toxic shit in the environment, but these people want to stop all progress because something somewhere MIGHT be harmed.

Re:Queue the screams of hysteria (2)

SuperDre (982372) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457438)

I'm not an environmentalist, but yeah, where does the heated water go? I don't think they will dump it back into the fjord directly.. But even a few degrees more being poured back into the fjord for a long time can be devastating to the enviroment, and not only the direct enviroment, but also nearby.. In the end the joke's on us and we'll have to deal with the consequences..

government conspiracy written all over it... (1)

ronpaulisanidiot (2529418) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456122)

clearly, this fjord-cooled data center is the product of a massive government/environmentalist conspiracy, to tout global warming awareness. earth gets too warm, and your data center will melt down...

New life to be found (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456132)

Hydrothermal datacenter vent creatures...

Re:New life to be found (5, Funny)

GeneralTurgidson (2464452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456272)

We call those Interns around here

Who would have thought. . (3)

Master Moose (1243274) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456138)

Building things in a cold climate keeps them cold.. . Film at 11

Re:Who would have thought. . (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456410)

Building things in a cold climate keeps them cold.. . Film at 11

Also up at the 11 o'clock news: data center opens up a seafood restaurant, claims no ovens or stoves needed.

Hitchhikers Reference (5, Funny)

riboch (1551783) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456140)

As long as they do not destroy Slartibartfast's fjords then I am "cool" with it.

Re:Hitchhikers Reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456274)

Come now or you will be late

Really Afjordable Option (4, Funny)

caffiend666 (598633) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456146)

We're always looking for more afjordable options for data cooling. As long as they avoid the local pines in their construction. No one wants to be pining for the fjords....

Re:Really Afjordable Option (1)

swalve (1980968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456610)

[vomit!]

Well done!

Re:Really Afjordable Option (1)

cold fjord (826450) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456778)

No one wants to be pining for the fjords....

Hey! That was uncalled for, you insensitive clod!

Nothing new to see here... move along (5, Informative)

rbmyers (587296) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456150)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rankine_cycle [wikipedia.org]
The industrial revolution was growing on chill-water supplied by nature long before the triode, never mind the transistor, had been invented. And all the environmental issues came up long before Al Gore was born.

Re:Nothing new to see here... move along (4, Informative)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456540)

And all the environmental issues came up long before Al Gore was born.

Gore was just graduating from college when Environmental Impact Statements became required under law.

FYI, the straw that broke the camel's back and forced modern american environmental laws into existence was a *blowout on a drilling rig off the shore of California.
A couple years later, the EPA was created and the Clean Water Act was passed, along with a bunch of other environmental laws.
I'd hope that not everyone has to learn responsible stewardship the way we did.

*The largest oil spill of its time, currently the #3 largest oil spill in the USA

Re:Nothing new to see here... move along (2)

rbmyers (587296) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456716)

The issue is that industrial processes produce heat, and people were not so thick as not to understand that discharging heated water into a lake, river, or stream would have consequences, even if the discharge water was completely free of pollutants aside from excess heat. Engineers had to think about it because, even if you didn't care about fish and other wildlife, any body of water had a finite capacity for carrying heat away. That finite capacity had economic value. Once you start thinking about how fast you could dump heat into (say) a river, a whole bunch of environmental issues (like dead fish) comes along for the ride. The arrival of Federal law is not an indicator of the first time anyone thought about the issues.

Of course. (2)

Zaldarr (2469168) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456152)

We have Slartibartfast to thank for this.

Strangely (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456160)

I have been pining for this

Hmmm (1)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456194)

I wonder why it is that the thought of running a light-water nuclear fission power plant with only the atmosphere for cooling doesn't bother me, but the thought of using a fjord to cool a data-center does.

It's an unsettling feeling...there must be a reason, I just can't think of it right now.

Re:Hmmm (1)

rbmyers (587296) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456266)

Is everyone here a programmer? Cold is as valuable as heat. Heat has to be rejected into the environment for any industrial process and, no matter where you do it, it has negative environmental consquences. Also no matter the heat source: electronics, coal, nuclear, you name it. Data centers have no new or special issues.

Simpsons did it. (1)

jtownatpunk.net (245670) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456204)

Oh, every week there's a canal.
Or an inlet.
Or a fjord.

Return Flow is ? Degrees C (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456276)

50C is my bet.

So what will happen to the fjord bios when they start filtering that hellsh torrent from the Datacenter?

Dead fish for eveybody.

Numerous places for Americ (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456290)

Alaska comes quickly to mind.
But even better would be the ski resorts. Plenty of bandwidth close to these, esp in Colorado. Likewise, plenty of cold and energy.

Wrong story (2)

plover (150551) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456324)

I came here looking for a chjevy-powered cooling system.

This will never work (2)

tlassanske (1536269) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456350)

They don't make Fjords and Czevies the way they used to.

Datacenter location is more complex than cooling.. (2)

akirchhoff (95640) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456412)

You have to figuring in more than just cooling:

1. How much does power cost in the location
2. How much power is available. Data centers suck huge amounts no matter how efficient.
3. Do people want that heat island near them.
4. Is the data center near the consumer of its resources? Latency still matters to me.

Re:Datacenter location is more complex than coolin (3, Informative)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456714)

1+2/ Huge steep hills plus glacial lakes means cheap hydro power in Norway.
3/ Do you really think this is going to pump out much heat in comparison with realitively trivial heat sources like factories for making potato chips? Also since most of that heat is supposed to be going into the massive heatsink of a deep Fjord connected to a cold ocean it's not going to matter beyond a few metres from an outlet anyway.
4/ For most purposes within the same hemisphere is plenty.

Seawater cooling is an expensive pain in many ways but there's well over a century of experience with it. The data centre itself will probably have a freshwater loop and then a heat exchanger keeping that corrosive seawater out of the place.

Dark Side of the Moon (1)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456452)

Or somewhere similar in space.

Heh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456548)

For a minute there I thought they were trying to get Bjork to cool it.

Re:Heh (1)

Rei (128717) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456872)

Iceland != Norway. Björk is Icelandic. Well, at least technically; she's pretty atypical even by Icelandic standards ;)

Common in the water-cooling days. (1)

Animats (122034) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456584)

This isn't new. Control Data, when they were next to Seymour Cray's farm in Minnesota, was dumping hot water into a well, while pumping cold water up from another nearby well. Once you drill down 15m or so, ground water temperature doesn't change much year round, and in Minnesota, it's around 46-52F.

Good thing it isn't California (4, Interesting)

John Jorsett (171560) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456654)

A while back a business here wanted to use Pacific water to cool its equipment. They got turned down because discharging Pacific water back into the Pacific was deemed "contaminating" it because of the contaminants already present in the water that was going to be drawn from the ocean. I think they ended up going to a saner state.

Re:Good thing it isn't California (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456722)

A while back a business here wanted to use Pacific water to cool its equipment. They got turned down because discharging Pacific water back into the Pacific was deemed "contaminating" it because of the contaminants already present in the water that was going to be drawn from the ocean. I think they ended up going to a saner state.

so why wouldnt they just run it through some basic kind of filter, thereby leaving the water cleaner than whence it came :)

Re:Good thing it isn't California (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38457036)

A filter is like a net. They'd need a commercial fishing license and they'd have to shut it down if they fished the limit.

Re:Good thing it isn't California (3, Insightful)

artor3 (1344997) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457204)

Source? This sounds like the sort of heavily distorted (or outright fabricated) story that one might hear from Rush Limbaugh or some other professional liar.

Re:Good thing it isn't California (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457324)

This happens in a lot of places. We discharge water into the Brisbane river that is far cleaner than the river requires and is almost of drinkable quality. Yet we're riding on the edge of our waste water licence.

While I wouldn't drink our discharged water, I wouldn't even eat any fish we caught in the river given it's currently environmental rating of F (on a scale of A-F) [healthywaterways.org]

The data center is full of (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456678)

Norwegian Deep Blues.

Another major innovation, again scandinavia. (2, Interesting)

unity100 (970058) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456712)

I forgot how many times did i utter the same sentence this month. and yet another. scandinavia again.

see the evils of socialist (social democrat in world political jargon) education and continued governance. (for the majority of last 80 years at least).

more innovation per resource and population than the totally 'innovative' capitalist u.s. where is the wealth the 1% hoarding ? apparently not into innovation. for, if it did, we would be colonizing mars by now with the resources and population america has. but instead, there are homeless in the streets and police beating down students.

But... (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456754)

Doesn't that warm the fjords?

Re:But... (1)

Fuzzy Viking (1140767) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457462)

In theory yes. But the heat capacity of a deep fjord is so great I doubt you would be able to measure any change.

I need to get out more (2)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456986)

As soon as I saw the word "fjord" in the title, I stopped thinking about the topic and started planning a Monty Python tie-in post.

Similar projects (1)

One808 (2537044) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457060)

There are a number of similar projects around the country:

Lefdal Mine: http://www.lefdalmine.com/index.php [lefdalmine.com]
Fjord-IT: http://www.fjordit.com/ [fjordit.com] (these guys have a VERY cool concept - keep an eye out)
Rjukan Mountain Hall

And there's Thor Datacenter in Iceland: http://www.thordc.com/ [thordc.com]

Fjord-powered cooling systems? (1)

cold fjord (826450) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457132)

Intriguing..... intriguing.....

Why is this needed? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38457356)

I was applying for a job as a system administrator in the northern parts of Norway.

They had simply drilled their datacenter into the mountain. They had a steady supply of 8 degree Celsius air from the surrounding cool mountain.

It might not scale as well as cooling with water, but there is lot of rock in Norway...

Re:Why is this needed? (1)

Dynamoo (527749) | more than 2 years ago | (#38457486)

We use another Norwegian data company that has its servers in a cave system, not far from the one mentioned in the article. They use some natural cooling too.

Seems expensive. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38457454)

How do they afforjd this?

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