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Courtesy of Mike Allen and Steve Gschmeissner

BIV Round 2: Feasibility study of the re-use of exhaust heat from a data centre to grow microalgae

Principle investigator: Claudio Fuentes Grunewald
Swansea University

Partner: CGG Services (UK) Limited

Currently one of the main challenges that the human beings are facing is climate change. There is an urgent need to tackle this threat by applying new technologies in industrial activities to minimise the increase in world temperature. Using side-streams from industries is one way to fight against climate change, produce sustainable raw materials, and close industrial activities within a circular economy concept. Heat waste from industrial activities is one of the side streams that will be assessed in this project, aiming to use this water heat excess to produce microalgae biomass. The project will explore the technical and economic feasibility of the use of heat waste in liquid form originating from a data centre. The project will determine the main technological requirements to use the water heat waste, produce microalgae biomass, assess the potential products made from the biomass obtained, evaluate the possibility of using potential flue gas emissions as a CO2 source, and the re-introduction of the water used during the microalgae production process into the heat exchanger of the HPC. The main outputs of this feasibility study will be a full business model, including the design of a synergistic model between the HPC and microalgae cultures, design of microalgae plant attached to the HPC along with the relevant Process Flow Diagram (PFD), Piping & Instrumentation Diagram (P&ID), CAPEX, OPEX and all the related technical requirements to develop this new combined approach in a relevant industrial scale.