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Ark Data Centres to use hydrogen to power hyperscale campus

Company’s portfolio is now made of four sites in and around London, servicing customers and partners, including the UK government.

By João Marques Lima

Co-founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

3 Mins

July 22, 2021 | 11:08 AM BST

UK data centre operator Ark Data Centres said it is developing its new 385,000 sq ft Longcross data centre to be powered 100% using hydrogen technology.

The facility located on a 10-acre piece of land in Chertsey, southwest of the British capital, is due to be switch on in 2023 and is being designed from inception to minimise carbon emissions and reduce waste and water consumption.

Its backup generators, which in the data centre industry have traditionally been powered by diesel, will be replaced with gas generators that will have an immediate impact on reducing Nitrogen oxide (NOx) levels which have become dangerously high in city areas.

The company added, however, that the generators are future-proofed and ready for hydrogen as the UK grid transitions.

“Eventually using 100% hydrogen will provide only energy, heat and water vapour – which will deliver zero CO2 and no harmful emissions,” it said in a statement.

Roy Gibbens, executive director, sales and marketing at Ark Data Centres said: “With Longcross data centre we are reaffirming our commitment to ultimately deliver zero-carbon data centres in the UK.

“We are on a journey of dynamic continuous improvement utilising the latest innovations – and also future-proofing the facility so that it’s ready to take advantage of developments such as the move to a hydrogen-mix, then full hydrogen grid. In this way, our customers can be assured that they can also commit to and meet their own aggressive sustainability promises and emissions targets, which will become increasingly important to regulators, investors and the public.”

The Longcross Park data centre is one of Ark’s four new facilities in the London area. It will join Alliance Park in W3; Meridian Park in N9 and Union Park in Hayes.

Longcross Park is part of the Enterprise M3 Enterprise Zone and is one of the first commercial developments on the 300-acre Longcross Garden Village which will eventually comprise around 1,700 homes, community facilities including a new school, and an 85-acre country park.

Longcross Film and TV studios, another technology innovator and rumoured to be the resting place of the Star Wars Millennium Falcon, will be a neighbour.

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João Marques Lima

Co-founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

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