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New PNNL Olympus Super Cools off with Groundwater

J. Nicholas Hoover over at Information Week writes that the new Olympus supercomputer at PNNL has a a novel cooling system that uses groundwater.

Most supercomputers rely on air conditioning or chilled water to cool powerful computing clusters. Olympus’ system, on the other hand, uses 65-degree groundwater. The water is fed into a closed loop of water pipes that absorb the heat created by the machine’s powerful computing capacity. Some of that tech is supplied as part of Motivair’s Chilled Door High Density Rack Cooling System. That setup translates into 70% less energy use than traditionally cooled systems, which add up to $61,000 in annual cooling costs. “We don’t need mechanical cooling, don’t have any chillers, and are doing the cooling relatively close to the source of the heat,” Kevin Regimbal, director of institutional computing at Pacific Northwest, said, rattling off the reasons for the savings. “We’re cooling for the cost of moving water around.”

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