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Iotoi unveils sustainable excess heat solution - PIP3

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Finnish tech company, Iotoi Oy has unveiled its PIP3 solution that offers data centres a cost-efficient and environmentally friendlier way to distribute their excess heat via district heating networks.

PIP3 reduces data centre heat pump electricity costs by using the return pipe instead of the traditional supply pipe. This allows both lower temperature excess heat distribution and utilisation across existing district heating networks.

"The new PIP3-solution is in use in Porvoo in Southern Finland, where the city's largest primary school is heated with 45-50°C water from the return pipe," said Johnny Holmströmm, CEO, Iotoi Oy.

"This increases energy efficiency in the entire district heating network. With this innovation, you can both receive and distribute excess heat via the return pipe."

Historically, district heating networks have used the supply pipe for both excess heat distribution and use, causing the excess heat’s temperature of data centres to raise with heat pumps. The higher the temperature, the more electricity is required which also effects profitability.

The typical excess heat from data centres is between 25-40°C, which if pumped into the supply pipe in the district heating network, needs to be raised to roughly 70-100°C depending on the network’s supply pipe temperature.

PIP3-solution enables the usage of a district heat network’s return pipe. When the return pipe is used in distributing the excess heat from suppliers to users, heat pumps only need to raise this temperature to approximately 40-50°C, enabling significant cost savings.

The news comes as the EU Commission proposes enhancing Energy System Integration (ESI) for waste heat, enabling the reuse of excess heat from industrial sites and data centres.

Circular energy Economy is one of the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact main objectives, so data centre operators are exploring the possibilities of interconnect district heating systems and other users of heat.

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