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Discussion on: Let's talk about the Circular Data Center!

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Sriram Ramkrishna Author

The circular aspect in this case is that components that were being used in 1st tier markets are re-certified to go back into production for 2nd tier market. The carbon savings come from the fact that 2nd tier markets defer buying new equipment but instead purchase equipment that already exists. The performance are just as reasonable as buying new because computing requirements would be more modest compared to say what Google or Intel would want.

On your point that higher core density reduces the need for larger DCs, yes to a point, but more cores => > more power => more HVAC and electricity in the same floor area, so the higher density CPUs would
mostly save on real estate and construction costs, not energy?

Yes there is definitely a trade off of with more cores come with more power consumption - but still better than buying a new datacenter in terms of cost. In addition, you could re-use that power consumption if you were in an urban environment by heating office buildings or water etc. So if you read articles like this - you can still create savings even with denser data centers - this company cloud and heat based in Germany are also coming up with innovative designs around this problem.
There are a lot of new interesting directions since I think the demand for datacenters will continue to rise - but we need to do it smartly. If you're doing cloud - it might be good to know where you cloud providers house their clouds or where you'd house your own cloud.