Nav: Home

EARTH: Thirsty business -- How the tech industry is bracing for a water scarce future

October 04, 2016

Alexandria, VA - Server farms do the heavy lifting to meet public demand for information, from emails and tweets to credit card transactions and video streaming. Buildings that house the servers require tremendous amounts of energy to keep the servers running, and even more water to keep them functioning and cool. As the need for warehouses of servers has grown, tech giants like Facebook, Google and Microsoft have started building data centers in seemingly out-of-the-way places for good reason: because the local climates can reduce the energy and water needs for the operations. Not to be left behind, the semiconductor industry - led by companies like Intel - are also innovating to reduce their water usage.

The October issue of EARTH Magazine explores the multitude of ways the tech industry is trying to address the hard reality of water as a finite resource. These solutions range from submerging server rooms underwater, using creative programming to maximize processing during daily temperature cycles, employing sensing equipment, and using dry chemical reactions and high frequency sound waves to reduce water used during the cleaning processes associated with microchip development. These efforts are not just a safeguard for the environment; disruption in chip manufacturing or data centers could have the potential to wreak havoc on profits.

EARTH finds that there is a community of businesses, sustainability organizations and creative engineers at the helm, navigating the tech industry into a more sustainable and predictable future, not as reliant on the natural cycles of the planet. Read the full article at: http://bit.ly/2d2m7FW.

The October Issue of EARTH Magazine is now available for digital download from http://www.earthmagazine.org, or in print in the September/October dual issue. In it, you'll find stories about how lack of afterslip following the Nepal earthquake is hinting at mounting plate tensions, how clouds can form in the absence of nucleating particles, and new research that suggests that the reaches of the Milky Way may now be invisible to a third of humanity. Read these stories and many more in EARTH Magazine.
-end-
> Keep up to date with the latest happenings in Earth, energy and environment news with EARTH Magazine online at: http://www.earthmagazine.org. Published by the American Geosciences Institute, EARTH is your source for the science behind the headlines.

The American Geosciences Institute is a nonprofit federation of geoscientific and professional associations that represents more than 250,000 geologists, geophysicists and other earth scientists. Founded in 1948, AGI provides information services to geoscientists, serves as a voice of shared interests in the profession, plays a major role in strengthening geoscience education, and strives to increase public awareness of the vital role the geosciences play in society's use of resources, resiliency to natural hazards, and interaction with the environment.

American Geosciences Institute

Related Water Articles:

Source water key to bacterial water safety in remote Northern Australia
In the wet-dry topics of Australia, drinking water in remote communities is often sourced from groundwater bores.
Our water cycle diagrams give a false sense of water security
Pictures of the earth's water cycle used in education and research throughout the world are in urgent need of updating to show the effects of human interference, according to new analysis by an international team of hydrology experts.
Water management helped by mathematical model of fresh water lenses
In this paper, the homeostasis of water lenses was explained as an intricate interaction of the following physical factors: infiltration to the lens from occasional (sporadic) rains, permanent evaporation from the water table, buoyancy due to a density contrast of the fresh and saline water, and the force of resistance to water motion from the dune sand.
The age of water
Groundwater in Egypt's aquifers may be as much as 200,000 years old and that's important to know as officials in that country seek to increasing the use of groundwater, especially in the Eastern Desert, to mitigate growing water stress and allow for agricultural projects.
Water that never freezes
Can water reach minus 263 degrees Celsius without turning into ice?
More Water News and Water Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Erasing The Stigma
Many of us either cope with mental illness or know someone who does. But we still have a hard time talking about it. This hour, TED speakers explore ways to push past — and even erase — the stigma. Guests include musician and comedian Jordan Raskopoulos, neuroscientist and psychiatrist Thomas Insel, psychiatrist Dixon Chibanda, anxiety and depression researcher Olivia Remes, and entrepreneur Sangu Delle.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#537 Science Journalism, Hold the Hype
Everyone's seen a piece of science getting over-exaggerated in the media. Most people would be quick to blame journalists and big media for getting in wrong. In many cases, you'd be right. But there's other sources of hype in science journalism. and one of them can be found in the humble, and little-known press release. We're talking with Chris Chambers about doing science about science journalism, and where the hype creeps in. Related links: The association between exaggeration in health related science news and academic press releases: retrospective observational study Claims of causality in health news: a randomised trial This...