Scuba Diver Magazines

Microsoft data centre sunk off Orkney Islands recovered after two years

Advertisement

Related stories

Diving instructor sentenced after student dies on training dive

Technical diving instructor Lance Palmer has been sentenced after...

Leafy Seadragon Photos Win Top Awards

Nicolas Remy Wins Top Awards With His Leafy Seadragon...

Seagrass restoration trials begin in Cornwall

A pioneering project attempting to restore climate change-fighting seagrass...

North East set to become ‘climate leader’

A South Tyneside Council-led project aims to strengthen North...

UK shark fin ban moves closer to becoming law

Bite-Back Shark and Marine Conservation’s relentless campaigns to make...

Microsoft has recovered a data centre that was sunk off the Orkney Islands back in May 2018 for Project Natick.

The container was retrieved from the seabed and the Microsoft team found that just eight out of the 855 servers inside had failed, leading them to conclude that it had a lower failure rate than a conventional data centre.

Microsoft

Project Natick has now got the Microsoft team thinking that the greater reliability may be linked to the fact that there were no humans in the capsule, and that nitrogen – rather than oxygen – was released inside.

Microsoft's Ben Cutler explained: “We think it has to do with this nitrogen-rich atmosphere that reduces corrosion and is cool, plus there were no people banging things about!”

The Orkney Islands might seen an odd place for such a project, but the location was chosen because it is a renowned centre for renewable energy research – all of the islands' electricity comes from wind and solar power – and in a place with a temperate climate, which assisted with ‘cooling' the computers underwater.

Microsoft

This project might be at an end, but it has certainly got people thinking. David Ross, who has been a consultant to the data industry for a long time, reckons the idea of underwater data centres is not as bizarre as it might sound.

“You could effectively move something to a more-secure location without having all the huge infrastructure costs of constructing a building. It's flexible and cost-effective,” he said.

Mark Evans
Mark Evans
Scuba Diver's Editorial Director Mark Evans has been in the diving industry for nearly 25 years, and has been diving since he was just 12 years old. nearly 40-odd years later and he is still addicted to the underwater world.
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Listen to our Podcast

LET’S KEEP IN TOUCH!

Get a weekly roundup of all Scuba Diver news and articles

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Latest stories
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x