Renewable Energy

Energy management of fuel cell powered data centers

This project proposes a new route for the design and operation of data centers.






Project manager at MDU

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Description of the project

More and more data centers have been built, resulting in a proliferated energy consumption. The data center is estimated to account for 1.4% of the global electricity consumption, and the compound annual growth rate of this consumption in the period between 2007 and 2012 has been estimated as 4.4%. The huge amount of energy consumption has become a major concern for the further development of data centers, and improving energy efficiency is going to play a key role in reducing the growth rate of the data center's energy consumption. Due to high energy efficiency, fuel cells are a promising solution for powering data centers. The transition of energy supply from traditional electricity grid to fuel cells have several potential benefits, such as cost reduction, environmentally friendliness and improved reliability.

This project proposes a new route for the design and operation of data centers. Based on proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs), a novel power system and energy management system are developed, which can effectively improve the overall efficiency of data centers, increase the penetration of renewable energy and enhance the flexibility of the grid. In addition, optimization will be performed employing multi-scale simulations for cooling of system.


This research relates to the following sustainable development goals