Data center

Apple’s new iCloud data center in Viborg is now operational, running on 100% renewable energy.

After nearly four years of construction, Apple's new iCloud data center, located near the Danish city of Viborg in Europe, is now operational. Like all of the company's data centers, this one's running on 100 percent renewable energy. Earlier this summer, the Cupertino company completed one of Scandinavia’s largest solar arrays to power the Viborg facility. It marks the first Danish solar project built without the use of public subsidies.

Apple will build another data center in Denmark

Apple will build another iCloud data center in the Danish city Aabenraa near the German border, its second in the country, Apple's Nordic director Erik Stannow told Reuters today.

The Cupertino company will spend 6 billion Danish crowns, which works out to approximately $921 million, on the facility which will be powered entirely by renewable energy.

It will power App Store, Siri, iMessage, Maps and other iCloud services. Construction is expected to start before the end of 2017.

Stannow told Reuters in an email:

We're thrilled to be expanding our data center operations in Denmark, and investing in new sources of clean power. The planned facility in Aabenraa, like all of our data centers, will run on 100 percent renewable energy from day one, thanks to new clean energy sources we're adding.

He added that the reliability of the Danish grid is one of the main reasons Apple will operate two data centers in Denmark, a leader in wind power which also has abundant supplies of biomass energy.

If all goes as planned, the facility should go online in the second quarter of 2019.

The iPhone maker is also building a $1 billion data center in Denmark's Foulum, a small town located just outside of Viborg, a city in central Jutland that is home to Aarhus University and agricultural research facilities.

That facility should go online later this year, barring any unforeseen circumstances.

Apple is also building a data centre in Ireland but it's been struggling to get it off the ground because local residents asked the High Court for a judicial review on environmental grounds.

"The proposed data center is currently under judicial review," a spokeswoman said.

Image: Apple's data center in Maiden, North Carolina

Apple’s Danish data center to warm homes and provide fertilizer to farmers

After analyzing Apple's environment report for 2016, which was released yesterday, MacWorld spotted that the company's data center being built in Denmark will return excess heat to the community, helping warm local homes. The facility in Denmark’s central Jutland region will be partly powered by recycling waste products from farms. Apple is working with Aarhus University on a solution that could turn some of the waste into nutrient-rich fertilizer for local farmers to use on their fields.

Apple’s failed sapphire plant will now build server cabinets for its global data centers

Apple's failed sapphire crystal manufacturing facility in Mesa, Arizona will be repurposed to produce server assembly cabinets for the Cupertino firm's global data centers, according to a notification published by the Federal Register and cited yesterday by Business Insider.

Apple already has authority to produce certain components for consumer electronics in a special zone that exempts it from customs duty payments, but now it's looking for approval from the Foreign-Trade Zones Board to produce “finished products and foreign status materials and components” in the Mesa factory.

Construction is underway for Apple’s $1 billion data center in Foulum, Denmark

In February of last year, the Cupertino firm announced that it will be spending to the tune of two billion dollars on the construction of two huge data centers in Ireland and Denmark that will make iCloud and other services more performant and reliable for European customers. As per The Copenhagen Post, the Denmark facility is located in Foulum.

Foulum is a small town located just outside of Viborg, a city in central Jutland that is home to Aarhus University and agricultural research facilities. Additionally, the iPhone maker reportedly signed a multi-year clean energy deal with Aarhus University on a new biogas research and development project.

Apple given go-ahead to start building its massive $1 billion data center in Ireland

Following months of back and forth between Apple and Ireland's independent planning body An Bord Pleanála, plans for a massive $1 billion data center in Galway County have been approved, reports Business Insider. “Despite opposition from a number of individuals and local businesses,” Apple's been granted the go-ahead to build the first stage of the data center on a 197-hectare site.

The facility will support Apple’s online services for customers in Europe, including the iTunes Store, App Store, iMessage, Maps and Siri.

DigiTimes: Apple turns to established Chinese server vendor to bolster iCloud infrastructure

Apple has reportedly started buying servers from a government-backed Chinese firm, called Inspur, to use in its data centers, Taiwanese publication DigiTimes reported this morning. Apple's never confirmed nor denied industry speculation that much of its iCloud data centers run on Amazon's Web Services and Microsoft's Azure platforms.

That being said, Apple's reportedly embarked on a project to migrate iCloud services to its own data centers in order to satisfy increasing demand for iOS devices, reduce expenses and further reduce any possibility of attacks on the iCloud platform.