HOT|COOL NO. 2/2020 - "Decarbonizing"

A new heat pump center, next door to Facebook's data center, is an important part of District Heating Funen's (Fjernvarme Fyn) plan to phase out coal in 2022. Surplus heat from two Facebook server buildings is connected to a large heat pump system – heating up district heating (DH) water before it is fed back into the DH network.

By: KimWinther, Head of Business Development

‘We get surplus heat from Facebook as 27 degrees hot cooling water from their servers. Our nine heat pumps, chill the server building cooling water before sending it back to the servers. He points out a massive blue pipe in the corner of the large room where other pastel-colored pipes of various shades blend with the blue DH pipe: 'In the blue pipe, 35-40 degrees return water from the DH network comes in. The heat pumps bring up the temperature to 75 degrees, using the surplus energy from the servers. And then we send the DH water back to the DH net'. Kenneth Jensen points on a large hall with nine giant heat pumps in a row and says: ‘They upgrade the energy from Facebooks' cooling water to the DH water’.

In 2017 DHF and Facebook signed an agreement on the utilization of surplus heat for approximately 7,000 households. This was the beginning of Denmark's largest and one of the world's most advanced heat pump systems. The plant was in operation in the spring this year, and an expansion is already decided. When increased 45 MW heat pumps, using surplus heat and energy from the air, will heat about 10,000 more households in the future. The total investment will be € 30M.

Project manager Kenneth Jensen from DHF shows off the ‘Tietgen Heat Center’ opposite side the road from Facebook.

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