Fortum to use waste heat from data centers to heat premises and homes

Hitachi Energy will supply the grid connection in Finland for a project that will recover and recycle excess heat from data centers to heat Fortum´s various customer premises, such as homes, public and business premises. 

Hitachi Energy won an order from Fortum, a Nordic energy company, to supply an advanced grid connection solution that will enable Fortum to effectively replace fossil fuels with a sustainable emission-free energy source within its district heating system in Helsinki capital area.

Fortum will capture the excess heat generated from the server cooling process of the data centers and channel it to homes, public premises and businesses connected to the district heating system. The excess heat recycling project will be the largest in the world dedicated to transferring heat from data centers to a district heating system. Its goal is to bolster Finland’s growth and competitiveness by advancing sustainable decarbonization, while increasing digitalization.

Hitachi Energy will contribute to the sustainable and unique project by providing domain expertise and delivering a state-of-the-art grid connection to supply power to Fortum’s excess heat recycling plant. The solution’s compact footprint is based on advanced gas-insulated switchgear, delivering excellent efficiency and availability, while minimizing the total life cycle cost and its CO2 footprint.

“It is an honor to participate in this pioneering clean district heating project and to support Fortum on its journey toward a sustainable energy future,” says Marco Berardi, Head of Grid & Power Quality Solutions and Service business at Hitachi Energy. “Our pioneering technologies, domain expertise, and project execution capabilities enable us to supply complete solutions with exceptional levels of reliability.”

“The recycling of excess heat from future data centres into Fortum’s district heating network is the largest project of its kind in the world. It will help us to take a big step towards carbon-neutral district heating in 2030, in line with the Espoo Clean Heat programme. The project requires world-class expertise, and I am glad that we have a partner like Hitachi Energy to ensure a cleaner future for generations to come,” says Project Director Teemu Nieminen from Fortum’s heating and cooling business in Finland.

The servers in the data centers are powered by renewable energy. Recovering and recycling this excess heat into district heating aligns with Fortum’s commitment to phase out coal in district heating in Finland in 2024. Furthermore, it paves the way towards the target of carbon-neutrality by 2030.

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