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Hive Blockchain partners with EcoCooling for ultra-efficient HPC research

Written by Tue 11 Aug 2020

Hive Blockchain partners with cooling experts EcoCooling to develop ‘environmentally responsible’ HPC

Hive Blockchain is partnering with cooling experts EcoCooling to develop environmentally friendly High-Performance Computing (HPC) infrastructure.

The two companies partnered as part of EcoCooling’s involvement in the Boden Type Data Centre (BTDC) project, an award-winning EU initiative researching data centre efficiency.

The BTDC pilot project in Boden, Northern Sweden, utilises a range of techniques, processes and equipment developed by a pan-European consortium of members. A prototype constructed in 2019 achieved a Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) of less than 1.1.

All power at the facility is produced from local hydroelectric stations on the river Lulea. Being very close to the Arctic circle, the climate can support continuous cooling of data centres without the need for refrigeration.

EcoCooling’s contribution to BTDC, is you guessed it, cooling. Its approach — direct fresh air cooling with a ‘holistic’ approach to IT equipment integration — will now be applied to Hive Blockchain’s HPC demands and tested at BTDC’s Boden Facility. Installation commenced in July and the project team expects to publish the first results on the BTDC website soon.

“We are targeting a PUE of <1.01 in the BTDC with a plan to apply this in both new projects and retrospectively incorporate these techniques and processes into our existing facilities,” said Tobias Ebel, board director, Hive.

While Hive will be the direct beneficiaries of the collaboration, the research will be later applied to largescale HPC facilities to benefit the wider sector.

Hive Blockchain currently operates Graphic Processing Unit (GPU)-based facilities in Sweden and Iceland that provide transaction validation services for the Ethereum blockchain, a global open-source platform for decentralised applications.

“The BTDC project will give us an opportunity to develop not only the most efficient, and therefore the lowest operating cost solution to HPC, but also the most flexible,” said Darcy Daubaras, CFO at Hive.

“The development of infrastructure which can accommodate new compute technologies with rapid deployment will be a key outcome for Hive.”

Written by Tue 11 Aug 2020


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