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US cannabis industry clamouring for data centre high-grade

Written by Mon 25 Mar 2019

US design and engineering consultancy PlanNet says its green footprint is in full bloom

It’s well known that the benefits of data centre tech innovations are not confined to the IT sector.

Uninterruptible power supplies for one, are essential in just about any scenario where unexpected power disruption can result in deaths, injuries or business downtime. When thinking of ‘mission critical’ just cast your mind to the healthcare industry, where UPSs are critical to supporting and protecting vital medical equipment.

In the US, a breezy beneficiary of data centre tech has emerged on a somewhat hazy Californian horizon – one that’s green credentials does not mean it specialises in renewables. For several years now, data centre suppliers have been passing their latest tech to the left-hand side, into the arms of the cannabis industry.

“Grow facilities face many of the same challenges as other more traditional critical facilities,” said Michael Fluegeman, PE, principal senior engineer at Californian design and construction consultancy PlanNet.

Last week in Texas, the firm presented three case studies detailing the healthy relationship between mission-critical technology and the cannabis industry.

Alongside backup generators and automatic transfer switches (ATSs), grow facilities in California depend on reliable electrical and water supplies and temperature and humidity control to protect crops.

The same cooling tech that keeps the stacks chillin’, such as CRACs and evaporative cooling, is critical to high-value yields of the herb. Mission critical specialists STULZ provides environmental control equipment to some of the largest grow facilities in the US, where infrastructure failures can lead to hundreds of thousands of dollars of crop value loss.

“Technologies and practices considered essential in the data centre space also help growers improve speed to market, energy efficiency, effective seed-to-sale tracking for regulatory compliance, and security, allowing them to drive overall business performance and increase the bottom line,” PlanNet said.

Recreational cannabis is legal for adult use at the state level in ten US states and medically legal in 33. Relaxing regulation has fostered a booming consumer cannabis industry, which could be worth $20.9 billion by 2021, according to Arcview Market Research and BDS Analytics.

Written by Mon 25 Mar 2019

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cannabis cooling data centre ups
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