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Why Datacenter Cooling's Turning Liquid


By: Mary Jander

Datacenters are heating up. Denser server racks and clusters of high-powered GPUs are giving off enough heat to warm small cities—with attendant carbon emissions. As a result, liquid cooling is emerging as a way to sustain ever-growing datacenters and their valuable equipment. But solutions vary, and technology continues to develop.

Of course, thermal issues have been at the forefront for datacenter operators’ concerns for several years. But with ever-more-powerful AI clusters, hyperscaler facilities, and multi-tenant interconnection centers on the go, the question of how to keep equipment at optimum temperature is getting urgent.

Enter liquid cooling, which is touted as a solution to the datacenter heat problem by using water or alternative liquids to cool down machinery and reduce the heat they produce. These solutions are gaining ground because they are cheaper and more efficient than computer room air conditioning (CRAC).

According to RBC Capital Markets, the datacenter liquid cooling market, presently worth about $2 billion to $3 billion, is expected to grow more than 25% annually for the foreseeable future.

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