Table of contents:

How Russia gets income from a cold climate
How Russia gets income from a cold climate

It turns out that you can get a good income from the cold climate. In Russia, data centers are being built there, military equipment is being tested and bitcoins are being mined.

It is believed that maintaining all economic activity in the cold is significantly more expensive than in a normal climate, and therefore impractical. However, usually cold zones, in particular Russian ones, are rich in minerals, which forces a person to develop inhospitable territories and live there. “This is the reason for such a strong interest in recent years, for example, in the study of the Arctic,” says analyst of the Finam Group of Companies Leonid Delitsyn.

But it turns out that cold climatic zones can be economically attractive not only for resources.

1. Testing technology and research


According to Delitsyn, about fifty years ago, cold areas began to be widely used for testing new technologies. For example, the outstanding inventor Innokenty Chichinin, back in the 1960s, proposed using aerial bombs to excite seismic vibrations. Two birds with one stone were killed in cold areas - they studied the deep structure of the Earth and tested new military equipment.

2. Data storage


Back in September 2019, Petrozavodsk State University and GS Nanotech decided to build a distributed network of data centers in the north of Karelia. It is expected to save 40% due to the climate contributing to cooling on the operation of the data center. The project will be completed by 2025. The authors of the project believe that the network will occupy about 20% of the Russian and about 2% of the world market of cloud services.

GS Nanotech is a center for the development and production of micro- and nanoelectronics, capable of producing up to 10 million microchips per year. The data center network will be located in the northern regions of the Republic of Karelia. The plant and the central data center are planned to be located on the PetrSU campus, not far from the nanocenter and the center of civil microelectronics.

Foreign tech corporations such as Google and Facebook are also locating their data centers in the north, particularly in Scandinavia. “As for the use of cold areas for the construction of data centers, in addition to cooling, they also need cheap energy. Therefore, data centers are being built where there are industrial energy sources, for example, hydroelectric power plants. They cannot be built in the taiga or swamps,”says Leonid Delitsyn.

3. Bitcoin mining


At the end of 2020, a cryptofarm was created in the Arctic near the stopped nickel plant in Norilsk. The climate in Norilsk, where winter temperatures drop below -40 degrees, favors mining, where the main costs are for cooling and electricity. The place is ideal for mining cryptocurrencies: it is cold here and there is electricity in the area that is not connected to any of Russia's power grids.

The project was launched by industrial mining operator BitCluster, an international infrastructure project headquartered in Switzerland. To date, the capacity of the crypto farm is 11, 2 MW, during 2021 it is planned to increase it to 31 MW. This capacity will allow mining up to six bitcoins per day.

These facilities of BitCluster Nord are fully utilized by clients from all over the world, including Switzerland, the United States and Japan, Vitaly Borshchenko, co-founder of BitCluster, told Bloomberg.

4. Construction of alternative energy sources


The northern territories are also suitable for the construction of solar power plants. So, in 2020, a solar power plant was launched in the Shugur village of the Kondinsky district of Ugra. Small solar power plants in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug make it possible to locally supply energy to the most remote villages in the region, where it is difficult to supply resources from large stations.

Before embarking on the project, we studied daylight hours, studied the movement and height of sunrise, the angles of solar declination. We carried out complex engineering calculations and determined the capacity of the batteries, calculated the volume of electricity generation per day, month and year. In order to get as much sunlight as possible in the winter, the panels were mounted at an optimal angle of inclination. The equipment was selected taking into account the climatic features of the area.

It is planned that the generation of electricity will reach 35 thousand kW / h per year, which will replace more than 2% of the total electricity generation from diesel generator sets and save 9 tons of fuel. According to the investment project, the payback period of the station will be seven years.

Popular by topic