Equinix, Inc., a digital infrastructure company, has joined forces with the Centre for Energy Research & Technology (CERT) at the National University of Singapore (NUS) College of Design and Engineering to study technologies that make it possible to use hydrogen as a green fuel source. By 2030, the company will keep working to improve the sustainability of digital infrastructure and achieve its science-based climate neutral targets.
The first study of its kind will be started by Equinix and CERT to examine the effectiveness of fuel-flexible linear generator and proton-exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell technologies. While fuel-flexible linear generators allow operators to quickly switch between several clean fuel options including hydrogen, biogas, and various renewable liquid fuels, PEM fuel cells are a major contender for hydrogen energy.
By using these technologies, data centers may be able to handle the increased demand for data, colocation, and connectivity services while lowering their carbon footprints. Also, a comprehensive evaluation of these technologies’ suitability for tropical data centers will be conducted as part of the research partnership between Equinix and CERT, taking into account local climatic conditions, site constraints, power demand, supply chain, fuel storage capabilities, as well as local regulatory policies.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the two parties was inked earlier this year and governs this research project. In accordance with the MOU, CERT will carry out a thorough investigation of the technologies chosen in partnership with Equinix to ascertain their scalability and operational viability.
Based on the study’s findings, Equinix plans to create proof-of-concept projects for its extensive worldwide network of data centers in order to facilitate inclusion in upcoming data center designs and real-world testing. The partnership between Equinix and CERT intends to expedite innovative solutions that can lessen the carbon impact of global data centers, especially in tropical areas, through fostering innovation in Singapore.
According to Yee May Leong, Managing Director of Equinix South Asia, the digital economy is powered by data centers, and by greening their operations, these facilities may help the emergence of sustainable business across the entire economy.
Meanwhile, for Lee Poh Seng, Director of CERT, NUS College of Design and Engineering, the global economy is supported in large part by sustainability. Timely development necessitates cooperation with partners in the private sector and academics in addition to the public sector’s efforts. As a result, they anticipate that their partnership will help advance green data center solutions that can be used both in Singapore and around the world.
Data centers have been found to benefit from using green hydrogen as a sustainable energy source. Even while global research and development is ongoing, hydrogen generation on an industrial scale is still a few years away from being economically viable, making it essential to consider and adopt alternatives.