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:

Using eVehicles for Renewable Energy Transportation and Distribution: and

Free High Speed Internet to the Home or School Integrated with solar roof top:

High level architecture of Internet Networks to survive Climate Change:

Architecture and routing protocols for Energy Internet

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Renewable Energy and the Future of the Internet datacenter

[An excellent summary of the economic benefits of zero carbon data centers. Green data centers also have the advantage of using renewable power that is uneconomical to develop for other industry sectors. Many renewable energy sites are not being developed because of the high cost of electrical transmission lines and the fees that utilities charge for wheeling of power. But connecting these sites with low cost fiber optic networks makes them ideal sites for green data centers. Some excerpts from ArsTechnica--BSA]

Renewable energy and the future of the datacenter

For the governors who attended the recent climate conference at Yale, one of the biggest political selling points for renewable energy sources was their long-term stability. In contrast to carbon-based fuels, where extraction mostly occurs overseas and for finite time periods, the sources of many forms of renewable power—solar, wind, geothermal, etc.—are widely distributed and indefinitely available. Several officials at the conference summarized these benefits of renewable power as the ability to create permanent jobs that don't get outsourced.

One point that state officials didn't raise, however, is that renewable power sources provide an additional opportunity for economic development when paired with the rise of the datacenter facility. Power consumption, and the costs that it entails, are now significant factors in locating and managing IT facilities. And though the present price of power is a major consideration, it isn't the only one; for long-term planning, the stability of a power source's cost per watt and the long-term availability of that source have to be factored in.

So in contrast to fossil fuel-based power, renewable sources represent power capacity with a source whose cost of extraction will be probably drop over time due to technological innovation, which means that, even as demand rises, the price may remain relatively stable. Renewable sources are also much less likely to suffer from disruptions in supply due to political events. These features make renewable energy sources incredibly appealing for a power- and cost-sensitive activity like running a server farm, and they're already beginning to influence decision making within the IT community. [..] The companies that build datacenters have responded to this reality not just by changing what kind of hardware they purchase, but by adopting the old real estate adage—location, location, location—in their quest for ever more cost-efficient datacenters. Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo have all purchased land in the Pacific Northwest in order to guarantee access to the region's cheap hydropower. Other companies are arranging for similar centers in upstate New York in order to get access to power from Hydro-Qu├ębec.

As the examples above indicate, hydroelectric power is currently the main player in the renewable energy game. Because hydroelectric is one of the cheapest forms renewable power, it's easy to dismiss its current popularity as not really indicative of the prospects for renewable energy in general. But other forms of power appear to be catching up, fast. Iceland is advertising that its combination of hydro and geothermal power make it an appealing location for data centers. Even in the US, companies are already offering renewable-power based hosting. The webhost AISO happily proclaims that it's willing to accept slightly lower profit margins in order to run its servers on solar power. Green House Data, in contrast, claims that a carefully chosen location combined with energy-conscious building techniques allows it to run off wind power for less than the cost of a typical datacenter's electric bill.

All told, the power from these renewable energy sources is competitively priced relative to non-renewable sources and, perhaps more significantly, its price and availability should remain relatively stable, simplifying long-term planning for companies. Moving forward, it's difficult to imagine any of these factors changing. The success of companies like Google and Amazon, and the continued emphasis on cloud computing means that datacenter expansion is unlikely to slow down any time soon. And the companies that build datacenters are likely to make stable and cheap energy a major focus of their construction decisions.

In the absence of federal action on carbon emissions, many states are enacting climate plans and attempting to increase the use of renewable power within their borders. If they can sell renewable power to their constituents as providing additional economic development through its ability to attract the high-tech sector, it may be easier to set these policies in motion.

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