Microsoft Corporation’s (NASDAQ: MSFT) recent project is named Natick. It is a prototype of a self-contained data center that was designed to reduce the company’s most expensive problem of running data, the air-conditioning.
The company has recently made public its brand new Project Natick, a data center enclosed in a steel capsule that operates hundreds of feet under the ocean. The main objective of this project is that it could save millions of dollars by solving the problem caused by air-conditioning.
Computer servers generate a lot of heat that can harm them and cause them to crash, so maintaining them was a big deal and air-conditioners were necessary. To be able to continue maintaining computers to be effective and efficient, it emerged the idea of using water as a cooling medium. This wouldn’t only be beneficial for their temperature control but would also help them run faster.
Between August and November 2015, Microsoft completed its first successful mission with the use of its first prototype vessel, named the Leona Philot after a character from the Halo series. According to The New York Times, the Leona Philot vessel contained one server rack surrounded by pressurized nitrogen to remove heat from the components.
Project Natick capsules are designed to last for 20 years, coming out of the water every five years to swap out servers and being checked by a diver once a month.
PC World explains that according to Microsoft, underwater data would bring many benefits to the world, for instance, it can help reduce cooling costs and emissions from a regular data center by taking advantage of the lower temperatures of the environment.
An underwater capsule can also be built and put to work within 90 days. They could also be dropped off at coasts of a disaster zone which will help to enable faster access to data.
Finally, about half the world’s population lives within 124 miles of the ocean. Placing data centers offshore bring them closer to more users, and it would help the time it takes data to be transferred from a server to a PC or smartphone, move a lot faster.
Source: PC World