Circular flows - DataCenters 2 Biomass Drying (DC2BD)

Reference number
Coordinator RISE Research Institutes of Sweden AB - SICS NORTH SWEDISH ICT AB
Funding from Vinnova SEK 960 000
Project duration October 2017 - June 2018
Status Completed
Venture Circular economy
Call Circular economy - Inquiries and simple test

Purpose and goal

The overall aim of the project was to demonstrate a circular economy connecting datacenters, wood drying to support heat producers, alternative to produce biocoal. This is performed through 4 activities including market analyses of usage of waste heat from the datacenters and usage of dried biomass in heating plants in Norr- and Västerbotten as well as simple tests to dry wood ships using waste heat from datacenters and to analyze the capacity of the waste heat regarding temperature, humidity and flow).

Expected results and effects

The calculations, tests and simulations made at an existing data center plant determined that the possibility of drying wood chips is best in the temperature range 30 - 35°C on the waste heat. Our simulations show that biomass drying is more favored by high air velocities compared to high temperature, which is beneficial in the case of waste heat from a data center. Based on market analyzes, it can be noted that the interest in buying dried wood chips and the use of data center waste heat is present but is weak.

Planned approach and implementation

To evaluate a data center´s drying capacity for biomass, a data center test facility has been used, where different instances of temperature and effects have been tested to determine the required airflow created for cooling. As well as surveys and interviews with established data centers in northern Sweden for data collection. A market analysis has been carried out among 14 heaters or heat producers in Norr- and Västerbotten because they have received a short survey of their fuel consumption. Easier drying tests in wire trays have been carried out to estimate the drying process.

External links

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