Facebook Eyes Denmark for New Data Center

The project would become the company’s third data center outside the U.S. and its biggest one in Europe.

By Robert Demeter

Luleå Data Center, Sweden
Luleå Data Center, Sweden

Odense, DenmarkFacebook has recently unveiled plans for a new 1.9 million-square-foot data center facility in Odense, Denmark’s third-largest city. The complex, consisting of three server halls, will store and manage the social media giant’s growing user data, including photos and videos, local Danish news website Fyens reports.

The hub will be built in Odense’s Tietgenbyen industrial area on a 124-acre parcel, and the development is set to be led by Mace, a British consultancy and construction company. Cassin Networks Aps, owned by Facebook, purchased the development site for $10 million from the municipality of Odense, the website reports.

According to Fyens, the official VVM-assessment (an environmental document) developed by consultancy company Cowi shows that the Odense data center will feature three server rooms totaling 1 million square feet, an administrative building, a substation and emergency power generators.

If completed, the project will be the company’s third data center outside the U.S., and the biggest in Europe. In 2013, the California-based company opened a similar facility in Sweden and is currently developing a data center in Ireland.

Luleå Data Center Equippment
Luleå Data Center Equippment

One of the reasons Facebook is eyeing Denmark is the recent decision of the European Union to remove a controversial energy tax in the country. The PSO tax has been in place for both private and business consumers since 1998 to fund energy that is considered less harmful to the environment. The current 11 percent rate means Danes paid the EU’s highest electricity prices. The Danish government agreed earlier this year to remove the tax gradually over the next six years, according to British publication Arstechinca.

According to a research report by Technavio, the data center construction market in Europe’s Nordic region is expected to grow at a CAGR of more than 22 percent until 2020.

“Many data centers in the Nordic region comply with green standards as they are powered by renewable energy sources and use free cooling techniques. These data centers are developed with a PUE of around 1.3 with the exception of modular facilities that have a PUE of less than 1.3,” Rakesh Panda, lead analyst at Technavio, said in a statement.

Most recently, Facebook announced plans for a data center facility just south of Albuquerque, in Los Lunas, N.M.

Photos courtesy of Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook Page