Data Centers

Concentrating Renewable Energy in Grid-Tied Datacenters

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Executive Summary

Datacenters, the large server farms that host widely used Internet services, account for a larger fraction of worldwide carbon emissions each year. Increasingly, datacenters are reducing their emissions by using clean, renewable energy from rooftop solar panels to partially power their servers. While some customers value renewable-powered servers, many others are indifferent. The authors argue that renewable energy produced on site should be concentrated as much as possible on the servers used by green customers. This paper introduces a new metric, the renewable-powered instance, that measures the concentration of renewable energy in datacenters.

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