HomeBuildingsNokia joins Nordic smart city project to build energy-positive urban data centres

Nokia joins Nordic smart city project to build energy-positive urban data centres

Norwegian real estate and tech firm Miris is building 20 data centres in business parks and residential areas in Norway during 2019 to support the smart city applications and services. The new facilities will recycle heat for local homes and businesses.

Miris will deploy network technology vendor Nokia’s Airframe Open Edge solution at the sites, the first commercial outing for the Finnish firm’s new cloud data centre technology.

Data storage contributes around two per cent of the world’s total greenhouse gas emissions, and the global need for digital data storage could be 44 zettabytes by 2020, reckons Miris. It is striking deals on land and property with municipalities and real estate companies to new facilities across the region, beyond its initial run of 20 sites.

Miris has joined with Norwegian firms Snøhetta, Skanska, and Asplan Viak, as well as Nokia, to set out its vision under for more sustainable urban data centres, which support smart city services and feed energy back into a “smart loop”. The group is collaborating under the Spark brand.

The new facilities will seek to conform to Norway’s Powerhouse standard – by a local smart-city consortium, including various of the Spark collective – which proposes, ultimately, that buildings have a positive energy footprint.

They will produce more clean energy over their lives than they used, effectively, in the production, construction, and operation of the site. Excess heat will be used in district heating systems and for the heating of household water tanks.

“By placing the data centre in the heart of the city, we can create a smart and sustainable loop, where the excess heat from the data centre provides thermal energy to the whole city, before it ends up in the centre again, cooling it down,” says the mission statement.

The new data centres will work as the digital engine rooms of new “power cities” in the region, says the vision.

The Spark model is based on a capacity of 200 racks, amounting to a 2MW data centre. Machines will be filled in stages, and the dimensions of the data centre will sflex according to demand and cost.

Nokia said it will develop and deliver edge compute services to support a range of city-focused internet-of-things (IoT) applications, including connected vehicles and various video processing, among others.

Jan Gunnar Mathisen, chief executive at Miris, said: “In Nokia, Miris has an industrial partner with a Nordic brand and global reach that can provide a complete data centre solution, including operations, leaving us free to focus on concept development, sales and deployment.”

Nokia’s Open Edge product is single-socket x86 server platform in a secured compact package suitable for harsh environments. Alongside, Nokia is providing its management software for IoT and real-time applications, and design support.

Jerome Julien, head of enterprise partners at Nokia commented: “Data centres consume as much as five per cent of the world’s power. In this fast-growing edge data centre market, we are pleased to work with Miris on such an innovative approach that delivers desirable smart city and IoT applications while also helping to reduce the environmental impact of these centres globally.”

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