NREL to Research Cooling Data Centers - Smart Energy Decisions

Energy Efficiency, GHG Emissions, Industrial  -  December 22, 2023

NREL to Research Cooling Data Centers

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) joined a $40 million program led by the U.S. Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) to reconsider how components within data centers are cooled.

The ARPA-E has selected 15 projects and NREL has been named as the lead on one research project. NREL is also supporting three additional projects within the ARPA-E Cooling Operations Optimized for Leaps in Energy, Reliability, and Carbon Hyperefficiency for Information Processing Systems (COOLERCHIPS) program, according to a statement.

The COOLERCHIPS projects will include partners from national laboratories, universities, and various industries, and will explore how to lower the energy required to power and cool data centers. These efforts will reduce the operational carbon footprint associated with this critical infrastructure and support clean energy goals to reach net zero carbon by 2050.

Data centers account for approximately 2% of all electricity consumption in the U.S. Cooling data centers account for up to 40% of energy usage in them.

NREL is a laboratory where cutting-edge concepts are deployed on campus to show real-world applications. For NREL buildings researchers, high-performance computing is necessary for modeling and simulations, allowing researchers to analyze very large data sets and control complex systems to better understand real-world applications. 


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