Data centers are not the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about green business, but that is changing with the increasing presence of data centers located in Stockholm, Sweden. Stockholm offers an almost perfect data center location because it has near zero environmental impact. The use of outside air-cooling year round is a key factor in Stockholm being perfectly suited for a data center of any size. With cooling systems being a key component to maintaining data centers, no air conditioning is needed to keep the massive computers from over-heating. Stockholm represents a cost efficient and very green alternative to other areas around the world.
Dean Nelson, Senior Director of Sun Global Lab & Data Center Design Service, explains the importance of choosing the right location for a data center. A key reason being the environmental impact aspect, specifically how clean and efficient the power is. A cost aspect is also of crucial importance, specifically the cost of the power itself. Sweden is located in a climate where outside air is cold enough to be used to cool the data center, Mr. Nelson points out that because of this, costs go down substantially.
Mr. Torbjorn Bengtsson, Business Development Manager for Stockholm Business Region Development, recognized early on that Stockholm could be the perfect place to have data centers. They let the world know how Stockholm could be a major player in data center location so he contacted potential clients.
Martijn Loderus, who works for Sun Microsystems, has two key criteria in choosing a location for his data centers.
1. The availability of natural resources to power and cool the data center.
2. The people in the location to build and maintain the data center.
Two interesting side notes – two German submarine engines provide backup power for the data center in the video, and the data center is located below ground in a former bunker.