Microsoft used hydrogen gasoline cells to energy an information heart for 2 days straight

The concept to discover hydrogen gasoline cells originated in 2018, when researchers on the Nationwide Renewable Power Laboratory in Golden, CO used a proton alternate membrane (PEM) hydrogen gasoline cell to energy a rack of computer systems. Mark Monroe, a principal infrastructure engineer on Microsoft’s workforce for datacenter superior improvement, stated his workforce watched an indication and was intrigued with the expertise. 

Monroe’s workforce developed a 250-kilowatt gasoline cell system, sufficient to energy a full row of information heart servers, and in September 2019 put in it at an Azure datacenter close to Salt Lake Metropolis, Utah. In June, the system handed a 48-hour take a look at. The workforce plans to check a 3-megawatt gasoline system subsequent, which matches the dimensions of present diesel-powered backup turbines.

It’s doable that an Azure knowledge heart could possibly be geared up and run fully on gasoline cells, a hydrogen storage tank and an electrolyzer that converts water molecules into hydrogen and oxygen, Monroe stated. These techniques may combine with the electrical energy grid to supply load balancing providers. Additional, hydrogen-powered long-haul autos may come to datacenters to refuel. By persevering with to develop hydrogen gasoline expertise, Microsoft may finally function a mannequin to be used of hydrogen gasoline cells elsewhere.