Keppel and Mitsubishi Heavy to explore hydrogen-powered data center concept in Singapore

Keppel Data Centres and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries are set to explore how hydrogen-powered data centers can accelerate Singapore’s journey towards a more sustainable energy future.

The two organisations signed a memorandum of understanding to study how hydrogen-powered tri-generation plant-supported data centers can meet expanding needs of the digital economy.

Mr Wong Wai Meng, Chief Executive Officer of Keppel Data Centres, said: “The exploration of hydrogen infrastructure is part of our strategy to work towards decarbonisation.”

Hydrogen as an energy source has the potential to be more environmentally friendly when it is burned because it does not produce greenhouse gas emissions.

“Hydrogen will be a key energy carrier in the global effort towards decarbonisation,” said Mr Yoshiyuki Hanasawa, Executive Vice President and Chief Regional Officer for Asia Pacific and India at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Group and Managing Director of MHI-AP.

A tri-generation plant works by producing heat, power and cooling, supporting data centers to access the electricity as well as the chilled water produced by the plant to cool the facility. By tapping on the electricity provided by the plant, a data center relies less on the national grid.

Keppel Data Centres and Mitsubishi Heavy will look to produce hydrogen fuel for the plant through a steam methane reforming process that is carbon neutral by incorporating carbon capture and storage capabilities.

“With Singapore set to become a global data centre hub, we look forward to partnering with Keppel Data Centres to support Singapore in creating a sustainable energy future,” said Mr Hanasawa.

One of the projects that might benefit from the hydrogen-powered tri-generation plant concept is the Floating Data Centre Park project in Singapore that Keppel Data Centres is currently pursuing (pictured above).

Keppel Data Centres partnership with Mitsubishi Heavy is well timed, as Singapore is aiming to improve its environmental impact by introducing Green Data Centre Standards, a carbon tax at a rate of $5 for every tonne of greenhouse gas emissions, and a committal to ensure at least 80% of its buildings will be green by 2030.

As Singapore looks to continue in its digitalisation efforts and boost the digital economy, sustainable data center infrastructures will be essential in empowering this.