Facebook broke ground today at a new data center in Fort Worth, Texas. The company says it will invest at least $US500 million in the project.
It’s an unusual choice given the hot climate of Texas and the intense cooling needs of a data center, but Facebook says it’s handled.
In the company’s announcement, Facebook said it will be powering the new data center with 100 per cent renewable energy, stemming from 200 megawatts of wind energy that it will be getting from a new clean energy project coming online in 2016.
“200 MW is more energy than we will need for the foreseeable future, and we’re proud to have played a role in bringing this project to Texas,” said Ken Patchett, director of data center operations for the west region.
As for keeping it cool, the company also doesn’t think it will be a problem. Facebook already has a data center in North Carolina with hot humid southern heat that it’s figured out how to keep cool, and it will be employing the same techniques in its Texas location.
Many will likely be watching to see if Facebook can keep it cool and the costs down. Facebook’s data centres are considered forerunners in data center technology because of its Open Compute Project.
When Facebook first built its Prineville, Oregon data center, it debuted a new energy savings plan, which it has since carried over to its other operations. The company then published its hardware plans so other company’s data centres can follow suit.
The new Fort Worth data center will be built as three, 250,000 square foot buildings and employ at least 40 residents of Fort Worth, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The paper also said that city council approved a $US146.7 million incentive package for the plan in May.
This is Facebook’s fifth data center. It’s other locations are in Oregon, Iowa, North Carolina, and Sweden.