NLDC: Circular heat system on the High Tech Campus in Eindhoven.
NLDC is the largest Dutch colocation provider offering carrier- and cloud-neutral services. They operate large data centers in the Amsterdam Metro area and in several rapidly growing regional hot spots.
A demand for heat
In 2014, NLDC was planning the construction of a highly sustainable data center on the High-Tech Campus (HTC) in Eindhoven. Three aspects were important with regard to this:
To use renewable energy;
To consume a smaller amount of energy;
To “borrow” energy instead of consuming it.
HTC showed to be an excellent location for the NLDC data center, as a heat exchange ring was already in place here. In fact, at that time the demand for heat on campus exceeded the supply and therefore NLDC was more than welcome as a supplier of data center waste heat. As a result, NLDC became the continuous “fireplace” that delivered low caloric heat to the heat exchange system of HTC. As data centers are always on, availability of the NLDC TierIV data center is for 99,995% guaranteed. Due to the introduction of NLDC in the circular system, HTC has managed to completely eliminate the use of gas.
It’s not only the HTC (and the environment) that benefits from the high-quality heat of the data center. As much as HTC needed heat for the campus offices, data centers are always in need of cooling to bring down the temperature of their servers. By passing on the heat to the exchange system, all that is left is cold water, which in turn can be used by NLDC to cool its servers. A fully circular, cradle to cradle system that results in a win-win situation for everyone.
In a nutshell
This successful project has resulted in a fully circular ecosystem on the High Tech Campus. While the offices on campus profit from the continuous free data center heat, NLDC is provided with free cooling. Resulting in a more sustainable environment and lower power usage and costs.
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