The EUDCA Technical Committee has published a new whitepaper exploring whether microgrids are the ideal solution for adaptive and reliable software-defined power for next-generation data centres. It aims to start a discussion about the feasibility of data centres joining with microgrids to supplement the utility grid with power generated using renewable energy sources (RES).
The climate emergency together with concerns regarding the sector’s energy consumption have already provoked the need for a sea change in the way that data centres are powered if it is to meet ambitious net zero ambitions. The new paper, authored by the EUDCA Technical Committee, is available for download from the website here.
Brice Martinot-Lagarde from Schneider Electric, a key contributor to the paper, says, “Microgrids have been deployed in various industries delivering renewable energy to complement the traditional utility power supply. Such projects were initially focused on small to medium-sized sites up to x100kWe. However, more recently there has been a shift to larger capacity sites associated with solar or wind power generation reaching more than 100MW.
“The sector therefore needs to seriously consider microgrid technology as a viable solution to provide data centre primary and backup power generation capacity, using renewable energy sources in ways that can not only meet high reliability and sustainability targets, but can also support today and tomorrow’s consumer demands.”
The new publication provides a description of microgrids and their modes of operation; the challenges for the sector in meeting sustainability and reliability targets given diverse energy profiles throughout Europe and the ongoing need to ensure uptime for IT services; the evolution of the microgrid, and importantly, how the sector can reduce its dependence on offsets by demonstrating it consumes ‘net zero carbon emission’ electricity in real time.