Data centres: Choose a more sustainable battery

Data centres are under increasing pressure to reduce energy and carbon. While many of the world’s largest operators are building and funding their own renewable power plants, there are other aspects to consider when it comes to sustainability.

The type of battery is one such consideration – and lead acid can be considered a cleaner choice than other less mature technologies, according to EnerSys applications manager Mark Coughlin.

“One of the key benefits of lead acid technology is recyclability – over 95 per cent can be recycled,” says Coughlin.

“For other technologies, depending on the battery chemistry, the processes are not as mature. With lithium-ion phosphate, for example, there is not much residual value, which results in end life costs,” says Coughlin, both financial and environmental.

Meanwhile, thin plate pure lead technology also offers low energy consumption, which means lower carbon intensity and smaller carbon footprints for data centre operators.

The ability to operate at higher temperatures, enabling reduced cooling demand, also provides environmental as well as cost benefits.