Microsoft is putting data centers into the ocean
Popular Science reported earlier this month on Microsoft’s plan to create and install submersible data centers due to the energy required to keep the servers cool. In the United States alone, half of the power to power the Internet is used to cool the servers so they don’t overheat and crash. This mimics past attempts at using liquid-cooling systems but without the additional power requirements to operate such devices.
Project Natick is still in the research phase. Microsoft ran a successful prototype–over a period of several months–last year. The test was done one kilometer off the Pacific Coast. The proximity to land was required since the datacenter required terrestrial power but looks to make the switch to wind or oceanic current energy power conversion in the future. Some of the project rationales include providing quick deployment and latency reduction due to proximity to coastal populations and temporary usage for large events like the World Cup or the Olympics.