Iceland – a paradise for energy demanding data centres
With low energy prices and a favourable climate, Iceland is the perfect place for energy demanding data centres. Advania is now expanding its data centres in Iceland with a major investment in service-based High Performance Computing.
- There are unique opportunities for this business here, says Eyjólfur Magnús Kristinsson on Advania in Iceland.
Text: Daniel Åberg
In recent years more and more clients have become aware of Iceland as an ideal place for large data centres. With a stable climate that rarely moves outside the range of -5 to +10 degrees Celsius and low-priced environmentally friendly geothermal energy means the island nation has unique opportunities to meet and even exceed customers' stringent environmental requirements.
"There is much talk of northern Sweden's favourable location for large data centres with reference to the cold winters, but they rarely mention that the summers there often are as hot as in southern Sweden. It requires large amounts of energy to cool down the centres," says Per-Ola Svensson, who is Data Centre Sales Specialist at Advania.
In Iceland, the stable climate with a naturally favourable humidity gives entirely different opportunities.
"Basically, we just need to open the windows during much of the year to manage the cooling of the centres," says Per-Ola Svensson.
Eyjólfur Magnús Kristinsson is the Managing Director of Advania in Iceland. He says that Iceland today has a constant surplus of energy and that the state therefore offers companies favourable conditions to subscribe for very low priced long-term agreements on energy.
"All in all, this makes Iceland into one of the world's best places to place data centres. We know companies that have been able to reduce its IT costs by 50 percent after moving their data centres here."
The HPC Centre (High Performance Computing) Advania now is developing is particularly well suited for companies looking for high computing capacity for computational clusters. The automotive and aerospace industry are two examples, companies in the life science sector another and meteorological institutes a third.
"Today Iceland has high and stable connectivity to Europe and the United States, but HPC is not primarily about data traffic, fast connections and short response times, but more about providing great computing power for advanced simulations, what is often called supercomputers," says Per-Ola Svensson.
Advania’s HPC centres are not only meant for those who need constant access to high computing power, it is also possible to rent capacity temporarily.
"We will soon launch an online portal where you can easily sign contracts for access to computing power for shorter periods of time."
The market for computer and server farms in Iceland is growing steadily.
"For companies today, it is less important where their PCs are positioned as everything can be handled online. We have seen an incredible growth in the last three years and all indications are that the trend will continue," says Eyjólfur Magnús Kristinsson.