Renewable Energy

Amazon orders new wind farm in Ohio to help power cloud business

Grazed from SeattleTimes. Author: Angel Gonzalez. said Monday that it’s commissioning a new wind farm in Ohio to help offset the power needs of its cloud computing business. Amazon Web Services, as the tech giant’s cloud computing division is known, has vowed to fulfill at least half of the energy needs of its big data centers with renewable energy by 2017.

That’s up from 40 percent in 2016, a goal that Amazon says it is on track to meet or exceed. The data centers that house the computing power and storage that Amazon and other cloud giants rent out have been called out by environmentalists as a growing source of emissions. Amazon’s new wind farm will be in Hardin County, Ohio, 70 miles northwest of Columbus, and when it opens in December 2017 it will be its second such facility in the state...

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Microsoft's underwater data center could solve some of the cloud's biggest problems

Grazed from Bizjournals. Author: Ashley Stewart.

Microsoft may have found a solution for some of the cloud computing industry’s biggest problems by moving its clouds under the sea. The Redmond company on Monday released details about a prototype for an underwater data center. Throughout a one-year pilot, called Project Natick, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) built and submerged a 10-by-7-foot, 38,000-pound data center about a half-mile off the Pacific Coast.

As Microsoft's cloud business ­– which reached $6.3 billion in revenue during the most recent quarter – continues to grow, so does the company’s need to store data. Underwater data centers, Microsoft found, decrease cooling and power costs, use more renewable energy, reduce latency and can be set up more quickly...

Boosting Wind Power with Cloud Computing

Grazed from InsideHPC. Author: Editorial Staff.

In this special guest feature from Scientific Computing World, Gemma Church reports that the wind energy industry is increasingly looking to the cloud and to modeling and simulation to solve its engineering problems. Wind power is a staple renewable energy source that is often described as relying on mature technology. In many ways, this assumption is correct as wind farms pop up across the globe in increasingly diverse and remote locations. But a lot of innovation is going on behind the scenes.

Many difficulties remain with the way we build and deploy wind turbines, which raises doubts over the profitability of such systems. The physical size of the turbines has increased and this makes such systems more complicated, increases the costs, and adds significant financial risk to projects that can cost hundreds of millions of pounds to complete...

Machine 'learners' compute cloud cover to balance power supplies

 Grazed from LATimes.  Author: Daina Beth Solomon.

Hendrik Hamann is into cloud computing — as in real clouds, those puffy things in the sky.  Working at IBM alongside some of the computer giant's most advanced systems, Hamann and his team seek a breakthrough in cloud-cover forecasting. They're aiming to help ease the introduction of solar electricity into the nation's major power grids, as solar-generated power is increasingly being loaded onto the grid, propelled by government mandates and solar-technology price declines.

There's a big problem with solar power that the IBM team is trying to solve: You can't pump out much electricity on a cloudy day.  But the demand for electricity doesn't decline when a solar plant can't produce energy. Another source of power has to take its place. So utilities keep coal and natural-gas power plants humming, ready to pitch in when solar can't do its job. That burns more fuel and costs more money...

Cloud Computing: AWS customers want more information on its renewable energy plans

Grazed from CIO. Author: Blair Hanley Frank.

Amazon Web Services customers have sent a letter to the cloud services provider requesting that it disclose more information about its sustainability practices. The 19 companies, including Tumblr, and the Huffington Post, said they want to convey the information to their users, customers, employees and other stakeholders.

While lauding Amazon’s commitment to get its entire cloud operation running on renewable energy, the companies wrote to AWS chief Andy Jassy last week that they want to see Amazon disclose more about its current carbon and energy footprint, its progress towards renewable energy goals, and its strategy for increasing its use of renewable energy...

Algorithm reduces cloud energy usage

Grazed from ITWeb.  Author:  Editorial Staff.

France-based computing solutions provider ViFiB has deployed a new resource allocation algorithm that reportedly reduces energy usage of cloud computing by 30%.  According to the company, thanks to this new algorithm, ViFiB net power usage effectiveness (PUE) reached a new low of 20%.

PUE is a measure of how efficiently a computer data centre uses energy; specifically, how much energy is used by the computing equipment, in contrast to cooling and other equipment. The PUE metric is widely believed to be the most popular method of calculating energy efficiency...

Cloud Computing: Why Google, Microsoft and Yahoo are buying up wind energy

Grazed from Washington Post.  Author: Editorial Staff.

As of now, the top three most widely used U.S. search engines, by a considerable margin, are Google, Yahoo and Microsoft’s Bing. If you live in this country and you are actually online, there’s well over a 90 percent chance that you use one of them, according to the web data company comScore.  This we all know. But what few people realize is that if you are using these searches, it is growing more and more likely that you are also engaging in what is, in effect, a green pattern of Internet use.

The reason? Google, Yahoo and Microsoft are part of a growing number of tech and other major companies that are entering into long-term “power purchase” agreements (PPAs) with wind farms to ensure a steady stream of power, at a fixed cost, over a period as long as several decades. Most recently, last month Yahoo signed such a deal for wind power in the Great Plains with OwnEnergy, a wind energy developer...

Cloud Energy Spent More on 4G and Wi-Fi Than Data Centers

Grazed from Midsize Insider. Author: Amanda Kondolojy.

When you think of high cloud energy consumption, the image of the crowded and stuffy data center likely comes to mind. However, new research from AT&T's Bell Labs and the University of Melbourne has revealed that traditional data centers only account for 9 percent of the cloud's overall energy consumption, which is in stark contrast to conventional wisdom and the push by some environmental groups to minimize data centers because of their energy consumption. However, looking at the whole picture of cloud computing energy consumption, data centers definitely are not the energy beasts they were once thought to be.

So where is all the cloud energy going? ZDNet Reports that 90 percent of the overall cloud energy consumption is taken by wireless access network technologies. In fact, on average, wireless networking, including Wi-Fi access and 4G connections, takes up a whopping ten times more power than data centers...

Cloud Computing: How Big Data can help in meeting big energy needs

Grazed from UtilityProducts. Author: Editorial Staff.

The world's demand for energy is insatiable whether it is solar, wind, tidal, oil and gas, thermal, hydro-electric, wood, nuclear energy. There are two types of energy - renewable and non-renewable. The non-renewable energy is scarce such as fossil fuels and nuclear material and is found in earth and there is a limited availability. This energy we use in our daily lives, whether in our automobiles or for generating electricity, which powers our home.

Renewable resources regenerate as we use them and include solar, wind, water, magnetic and bio-fuel created from farming. This is the future of energy for the planet and its inhabitants and is generally known as green energy. As the cost of energy increases and its availability decreases there is an extensive use of collating data in the discovery, extraction, processing and transmission and distribution of energy. The energy business is increasingly using Big Data and cloud computing to ensure efficiency and cost effective solutions. Let's take a closer look at the role Big Data and cloud computing is playing in the energy sector...

Insatiable energy appetite of cloud computing

Grazed from RenewEconomy. Author: Giles Parkinson.

The fact that cloud computing services use wireless networks does not mean they need less energy. In fact, it could be that the opposite is true. According to a new report prepared by Melbourne’s Centre for Energy Efficient Telecommunications (CEET) suggest that energy requirements for data networks (WiFi and 4G LTE) will surge more than five fold in the next three years, and will consume more than 10 times the amount of energy of data centres.

The report – The Power of Wireless Cloud – warns that industry has vastly underestimated energy consumption used by services such as Google Apps, Office 365, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Facebook, Zoho cloud office suite, and many others. It says urgent action is required to curb spiraling energy consumption and CO2 emissions. It says these networks will likely consume 43TWh by 2015, but it could be as high as 51TWh. That compares to 9TWh in 2012...