NEST serves EU project as pilot plant

Dübendorf ZH – The Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology wants to recover all the waste heat in its NEST research building, including from the microcomputing center, and integrate it into the heating system. This makes NEST a pilot plant for the EU research project HEATWISE.

The Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) is part of the international consortium for the recently launched three-year Horizon Europe research project HEATWISE. In buildings with extensive IT infrastructures, the waste heat from these systems is to be fully integrated into the building technology.

"The goal is a zero-waste principle," explains Binod Koirala from Empa's Urban Energy Systems Lab in a press release. "This means we want to recover as much waste heat as possible and integrate it into the building's heating system." In this context, the Empa team's first task is to identify the potential for heat gains in Empa's NEST research building. In addition to the waste heat from the microcomputing center in its basement and the computers in the offices, the influence of people present on the room temperature should also be taken into account.

The researchers want to use the data obtained in this way to derive predictive control algorithms that link the energy management of the IT infrastructure with the building technology. In addition to NEST, they will then be installed in three other pilot plants: in buildings at Aalborg University in Denmark, in a car factory in Turkey and in an IT research and development center in Poland.

At NEST, the data center's air cooling system will also be supplemented by the newly developed on-chip liquid cooling system from Israeli project partner ZutaCore. The recovered heat of up to 70 degrees can be used to run the showers in the building, for example. ce/mm

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