Google to employ carbon-intelligent computing for grid resilience in power crises

In response to severe weather events in Oregon, Nebraska, and the Southeastern U.S., Google utilised its carbon-intelligent computing platform in partnership with local utility providers. Additionally, in Europe, the company harnessed the software to curtail electricity demand and enhance energy security by reducing power consumption between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. during the energy crisis spanning December 2022 to March 2023.

Developed in 2020, Google’s carbon-intelligent computing platform allows the company to direct its data centres to perform non-urgent computing tasks when renewable energy resources are more widely available to reduce its carbon footprint. But as demonstrated over the past year, the platform can also be used to respond to local grid events to maintain reliability, the company said.

“The demand response capability leverages the technical foundations of this platform to deliver targeted energy reductions at specific data centres based on an event request from a local grid partner, typically during the system wide peak load,” Goodman said. “In other words, demand response is a new capability that leverages existing technical infrastructure to serve a new set of use cases and objectives.”

Google continues to work with grid operators to test and expand its demand response capabilities, Goodman said.

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