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Project Launch: 05/01/2022

Partner: Energy Resources Integration

The project team will research technologies for liquid-based cooling in data centers, ultimately providing recommendations for a cost-effective program design approach for these technologies.


The majority of current IT equipment in enterprise and consumer spaces is air-cooled: fans blow over heat-producing components such as CPUs and graphics cards, and this hot air is exhausted and cooled by HVAC equipment. In contrast, liquid-cooled systems move system heat through a cooling fluid, either through direct contact with system components or conduction through a coldplate. While liquid cooling technologies are primarily used in situations of high power density such as hyperscale data centers, recent advances in these technologies have made cost-effective energy savings possible for smaller and less dense facilities.

Based on encouraging savings results from previous Emerging Technologies research into a particular application of liquid cooling technology, the project team will survey the market of potential liquid and hybrid cooling technologies as well as data center customers in ComEd territory to understand the network of stakeholders enabling cooling interventions at data centers, establish customer challenges and potential mitigation, and ultimately identify a cost-effective program design for future evaluation.