Energy Internet and eVehicles Overview
Governments around the world are wrestling with the challenge of how to prepare society for inevitable climate change. To date most people have been focused on how to reduce Green House Gas emissions, but now there is growing recognition that regardless of what we do to mitigate against climate change the planet is going to be significantly warmer in the coming years with all the attendant problems of more frequent droughts, flooding, sever storms, etc. As such we need to invest in solutions that provide a more robust and resilient infrastructure to withstand this environmental onslaught especially for our electrical and telecommunications systems.
Linking renewable energy with high speed Internet using fiber to the home combined with eVehicles and dynamic charging where vehicle's batteries are charged as it travels along the road, may provide for a whole new "energy Internet" infrastructure for linking small distributed renewable energy sources to users that is far more robust and resilient to survive climate change than today's centralized command and control infrastructure. For more details please see:
Free High Speed Internet to the Home or School Integrated with solar roof top: http://goo.gl/wGjVG
High level architecture of Internet Networks to survive Climate Change: http://goo.gl/juWdH
Architecture and routing protocols for Energy Internet http://goo.gl/niWy1g
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Iceland Woos Data Centers As Power Costs Soar
[Some excerpts From Slashdot Frontpage article from BusinessWeek. Northern countries like Canada and the Nordic countries are well positioned to capture some of this data center business. In the past these countries used to lobby hard for large energy consuming industries like aluminum smelters - now the opportunity is with the much cleaner data centers and high tech jobs. High speed optical networks are the key for attracting data centers. There still remains an abundance of tapped renewable power which is uneconomic to ship to more populous areas because of the cost of transmission lines etc. But this power is ideal for date centers, because rather than shipping the power to the data center, with optical networks we can bring the data center to the power. In essence the data gets almost free renewable power because no other industry can access it. See http:/green-broadband.blogpsot for more information--BSA]
It's Too Darn Hot
The huge cost of powering—and cooling—data centers has the tech industry scrambling for energy efficiency [...] Haflioason works for Invest in Iceland, a government agency. He's pitching the desolate spot outside of Grindavik as a site for data centers, the sprawling facilities chock-full of computers that tech companies build to handle the swelling oceans of digital information.
It's a testament to the challenges companies face in operating data centers that Google (GOOG), Yahoo! (YHOO), and Microsoft (MSFT) have all checked out this remote corner of the world (although none has made a commitment so far). The reason: Iceland has a rare combination of vacant land, cheap geothermal energy, and chilly climate that makes cooling a data center nearly free.
The tech industry is facing an energy crisis. The cost of power consumption by data centers doubled between 2000 and 2006, to $4.5 billion, and could double again by 2011, according to the U.S. government. With energy prices spiking, the challenge of powering and cooling these SUVs of the tech world has become a major issue for corporations and utilities. "The digital economy is pervasive," says Andy Karsner, Assistant U.S. Energy Secretary for energy efficiency. "The demands for computing will grow exponentially, but electric consumption can't grow the same way."
Little wonder, perhaps: In the future, the competition between Google and Microsoft in the Web search business might be determined as much by data center energy efficiency as by which company writes the best search algorithm.
Think of the data center as the factory for the info economy. Every day, in thousands of nondescript buildings in the hinterlands or in the basements of office towers, trillions of chunks of information coded in ones and zeros are moved, stored, and assembled into new shapes. Those electronic packets include millions of e-mails, Facebook pages, blog entries, and YouTube (GOOG) videos; vast quantities of electronic transactions; plus an ever-expanding universe of data that needs to be stored, sliced, diced, and analyzed.
Energy consumption in data centers emerged as a major issue in the past couple of years. According to a January survey of its members by AFCOM, an association of data center managers, 88.5% of them described energy consumption as a serious or very serious concern, up from 36.1% five years ago. "You're realizing the cost of all that power. You look for opportunities to reduce costs, but now the cost of power is soaring," says Sal Cefalu, a vice-president for data center operations at telecom giant Verizon (VZ), which has 18 data centers nationwide. These days, for every $1 spent on computing equipment in data centers, an additional 50 cents is spent each year to power and cool them. About half of the energy is for air conditioning.
Since then, Microsoft has spent more than $2 billion building four gigantic facilities—in Chicago, Dublin, San Antonio, and Quincy, Wash. Now it's looking at locations overseas, including Iceland and Siberia. Its computing needs have doubled each year for the past three years, and Microsoft expects them to continue doubling each year for the foreseeable future.
Energy consumption is a major factor in Microsoft's planning. The company has created what it calls a "heat map" of the globe that takes into account 35 factors in site selection, including cost and availability of power. A group of scientists studies the latest advances in data center design and computing efficiency. And Manos looks for local resources he can take advantage of—such as water from a waste-treatment system that cools computers at the new data center in San Antonio.
Solutions to tech's energy crisis won't come easily. The largest data centers can cost more than $200 million to construct and are expensive to upgrade to the latest energy-saving technology.
Although more progress is needed, there have been some major advances in data center energy conservation. In each case, the breakthroughs were the result of scientists and others questioning the conventional wisdom in their industries.
Even the traditionally slow-moving utility industry is showing signs of surprising change. Take PG&E. Two years ago, after Bramfitt was handed the job of designing conservation incentives for Northern California's tech companies, he came up with a creative solution. He decided to provide financial incentives to companies that decide to use what's known as virtualization software. Without the software, each server computer typically handles only one program at a time, and only a fraction of the capacity is used. With virtualization software, many programs can be run on a single computer.
The result is that managers can pack more programs onto each server, thus burning less electricity and reducing the number of computers needed. Under Bramfitt's incentive program, PG&E pays customers for every kilowatt-hour of energy they save using the software.
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