Microsoft plans to focus on hydrogen fuel cells

Microsoft Logo - Fuel Cells

Company will be using fuel cells to power data centers

Technology giant Microsoft has plans to use hydrogen fuel cells to power its data centers throughout the world. The company believes that these fuel cells can double its energy efficiency. Microsoft is currently testing new fuel cell systems at several of its data centers. The company is no stranger to fuel cell technology, of course. One of Microsoft’s largest data centers in the United States derives much of its electricity from fuel cells as well as solar energy systems.

New $45 million fuel cell system to be put to the test by Microsoft

Microsoft currently has plans to install a new 10 megawatt fuel cell system at one of its data enters. The endeavor is expected to cost approximately $45 million. This fuel cell system will allow Microsoft to gather more data concerning hydrogen fuel cells and how they can be used to generate electricity in and efficient and reliable manner. Microsoft has grown more interested in fuel cell technology due to the fact that these energy systems do not produce any harmful emissions. As such, they can help Microsoft accomplish its environmental goals by cutting emissions and becoming more reliant on renewable energy.

Data centers are notorious energy consumers

Data centers could be ideal homes for hydrogen fuel cells. Combined, data centers consume more than 1% of all the electricity that is generated throughout the world. Data centers are quite important to nearly every sector of business and society. As such, they require highly reliable access to massive amounts of electrical power. Hydrogen fuel cells have proven time and time again that they are highly reliable. These energy systems can also generate massive amounts of electricity, even when their access to the hydrogen they need is somewhat limited.

Microsoft will be using renewable energy to achieve its environmental goals

Microsoft has made a commitment to become more environmentally friendly in the coming years. The company has been investing heavily in various forms of clean power, including solar and wind energy. Hydrogen fuel cells have been gaining more attention from the company because of how they can be used to power data centers as well as their use for various industrial purposes.

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2 Thoughts to “Microsoft plans to focus on hydrogen fuel cells”

  1. kafantaris

    Smart move: Microsoft be up close and personal with hydrogen and this should give it leg up on the competition.

  2. Clay

    This is good news, of course. I have noticed mention of “direct methanol fuel cells” associated with the MS effort, as well as the fact that extensive research is taking place in-house. I suppose these might be implemented more quickly until adequate REn H2 facilities are put in place. With easy access to methanol, there could be a time/cost advantage.
    Meanwhile, I can’t help but wonder what difference there may be in the environmental footprint of the methanol fuel cells as opposed to hydrogen fuel cells. Does anyone know?

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