Intel Cancels $700M ‘Mega Lab’ for Sustainable Data Center Technologies R&D

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Artist’s rendering of Intel’s planned R&D “mega lab”  (credit: Intel)

Intel has cancelled construction of a $700 million facility in Hillsboro, OR,  that was to have focused on development of sustainable data center technologies, according to a story in The Oregonian on Friday.

Part of a corporate cost cutting effort to reduce spending by $3 billion this year, and additional billions in upcoming years, an Intel spokesperson told The Oregonian that the company will conduct the data center R&D work in other, existing Intel facilities.

“We are looking to reduce costs and increase efficiencies through multiple initiatives. This includes exploring more cost-effective real estate options to continue our data center R&D work in Oregon that is already in progress,” The Oregonian quoted Intel spokesperson Penelope Bruce.

Last May, Intel announced the $700 million “mega lab” at its Jones Farm campus in Hillsboro, OR, to be used for R&D in liquid cooling and other sustainability technologies with implications for power-insatiable HPC data centers.

The company said it planned to build a 200,000-square-foot, facility “focused on innovative data center technologies and addressing areas such as heating, cooling and water usage” – and heat recapture and reuse.

However, Intel and other semiconductor companies have seen recent declines in revenues and share prices. Intel is scheduled to announce quarterly earnings later this week.

The lab was to have been completed in late 2023. Additionally, the lab was intended for qualifying, testing and enabling Intel’s portfolio of data center products, including Xeon, Optane, network interfaces and switch gear, Intel Agilex FPGAs, Xe architecture, Habana accelerators and future products under development.

It was also going to be an advanced technology showcase for Intel products in various data center environments lab to promote adoption of new technologies.