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Kao Data: The First UK Data Centre to Switch from Diesel to HVO Fuel

Crown HVO fuel is helping businesses and organisations across the UK to lower their carbon footprint. Our Kao Data case study details their experience of using Crown HVO fuel

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Kao Data centre HVO

We’re thrilled to have partnered with Kao Data to supply fossil-free renewable diesel fuel, Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO), to power its back-up generators at its Harlow campus in place of fossil diesel. This ground-breaking move will reduce up to 90% of net CO2 emissions from its generators and significantly reduce nitrogen oxide (NOx), particulate matter (PM) and carbon monoxide (CO) emissions.

Who are Kao Data?

Founded in 2014, Kao Data develops and operates advanced data centres for high-performance colocation. From its hyperscale-inspired campus in the heart of the UK Innovation Corridor between London and Cambridge, it provides cloud, HPC, AI and enterprise customers with a world-class home for their compute.

Devoted to tackling climate change, Kao Data is a member of the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact (CNDCP) and has one of the most sustainable colocation data centre campuses in the UK.

Current sustainable initiatives already in place include:

  • Using 100% renewable energy
  • Operating 100% refrigerant-free indirect evaporative cooling technologies
  • Incorporating hyper-scale inspired design to deliver a market-leading PUE of <1.2, even at partial loads

Switching to HVO fuel in its generators marks another huge step in its green commitment to become a fully carbon-neutral data centre operator by 2030. To begin, Kao Data has replaced 45,000 litres of diesel and then switched to using more than 750,000 litres of HVO when the campus is fully developed.

What are the benefits of using HVO fuel in your data centre?

HVO fuel is a second-generation, advanced renewable diesel alternative. Using a specialist hydro treatment process, it’s synthesised from 100% renewable materials such as vegetable oils, which makes it one of the cleanest fuels on the market.

HVO has been designed to combat the performance inadequacies of earlier biofuels. It’s FAME-free, so eliminates microbial growth which causes sludge to block fuel lines and potentially leads to engine shutdown.

This anti-microbial quality allows it to have a storage life that is ten times longer than standard diesel and offers robust year-round performance in both high and low temperatures. It is also easier to maintain, free from aromatics, sulphur and metals, odourless and is completely biodegradable.

HVO also doesn’t require any modification to existing infrastructure and can be used as a direct replacement for conventional diesel, eliminating the cost barriers which prevent users adopting other renewable fuels.

This pioneering approach to replace our generator’s diesel provision with HVO fuel is a key step in the company’s efforts to become net zero, and a further demonstration of our leadership in the international data centre sustainability field.

This move efficiently eliminates fossil fuels from our data centre operations, and helps us reduce Scope 3 emissions in our customers’ supply chain, while delivering no degradation to the service they receive. Most importantly, it shows how our industry can take a simple and highly beneficial step forward for the good of the environment, ahead of COP26.

Gerard thibault, chief technology officer, kao data

We’re proud to have worked with Kao Data to initiate a first-of-its kind project, which will be transformative for the data centre industry, and help pave the way toward significant reductions in industrial greenhouse gas emissions.

Join Kao Data on the road to becoming carbon neutral and switch to HVO fuel today. Call our fuel experts today on 0330 123 1444 to find out more or visit our HVO fuel FAQs page for more information, or view more of our Crown HVO fuel customer case studies.

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