Corporate Social Responsibility at Intel®
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Green Data Centers: Why They Matter

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Did you know replacing an old server with a more energy efficient design could save up to 1 ton of carbon emissions?

With more and more data shared every day, data centers, which are often comprised of hundreds of servers, have an increasingly important job. In fact, in just one minute, more than 200 million emails are sent, 20 million photos are viewed and 60,000 hours of music are played. And, of course, more data means more energy.


As data continues to expand, Intel is exploring innovative ways to absorb this growth while minimizing environmental impact. This week, you may have heard about Intel’s new Atom processor family, which is designed to power microservers and a new class of energy efficient storage and communications equipment. That’s pretty interesting when you realize that improving processing technology can generate significant improvements in data center performance. In fact, in some cases, processing technology can yield a 60 percent increase in computer efficiency. 

Intel is also exploring other innovative and eco conscious technologies within its data centers. For example, on its Rio Rancho, New Mexico campus, Intel conducted a pilot program with mineral oil cooling. For an entire year, the Rio Rancho servers were completely submerged in vats of mineral oil, which removed any excess heat and in turn, improved cooling for the entire data center. At first thought, the idea of placing technology equipment in mineral oil sounded pretty strange, but the results quickly changed my mind: The mineral oil cooling allowed us to save 7 percent of the server power by removing the fans, and modeling suggests it could result in a 90 to 95 percent reduction in energy use for the overall data center cooling system.

It’s pretty incredible to think about the technology-driven society we live in and how much data we share everyday – emails, text messages, photos, apps, etc. That’s why it’s now more timely than ever for large companies like Intel to start thinking about how to process this data in an environmentally friendly way.