Microsoft plans on building new servers in the ocean
Operating servers is generally a very expensive business. This is not only due to the actual acquisition costs of the hardware itself, but much more to the ongoing costs of cooling and power consumption which are driving up the bills for the operators. Microsoft is now trying to circumvent these two cost factors with a new procedure: The company simply wants to sink the servers into the sea and operate them there.
A first test of the technology took place in June of this year. Microsoft has successfully sunk a server in the North Sea and put it into operation. According to a report by arsTechnica, Microsoft plans to use this technology on a large scale in the future after this first successful test.
This would have a number of advantages. The servers could simply be supplied with electricity by using wind power, which would eliminate the running costs for electricity consumption. In addition, this form of power supply would be very environmentally friendly.
Furthermore, the sea water would keep the servers cool, which would drastically reduce space and power consumption. In an interview, Satya Nadella (CEO of Microsoft) also highlighted another advantage: 50 percent of the world's population is living near the coast. If the servers are located off the coast in the sea, this would significantly reduce access latencies. And last but not least, this technology would also be very flexible. The commissioning of the test device took only 90 days. This period is likely to shrink even further with the ongoing development of the technology. This would allow Microsoft to react flexibly to rising demand.
Along with Google and Amazon, Microsoft is one of the world's largest server providers. Most recently, Microsoft was able to boost its sales figures and profits significantly thanks to its cloud business.