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Traditionally reserved for mainframes and academic supercomputers, liquid cooling may soon be seeping into more enterprise data centers. New, more demanding enterprise workloads are pushing up power densities, leaving data center managers looking for more efficient alternatives to air-based cooling systems. We’ve asked a number of data center opearators and vendors about the applications that are driving liquid cooling into the mainstream. Some of them didn’t want to disclose specific applications, saying they viewed those workloads and the way they’re cooled as a competitive advantage.  #Hyperscale #cloud operators, including @Microsoft, @Alphabet’s @Google, @Facebook, and @Baidu, have formed a group working on an open specification for #liquidcooled server racks without saying that exactly they would use them for. At least one category of workloads in the hyperscalers’ arsenal, however, clearly calls for liquid cooling: #machinelearning systems accelerated by #GPUs, or, in Google’s case, also #TPUs, which the company has said publicly are now cooled using a direct-to-chip liquid cooling design. Despite operators’ caginess around this subject, some usage trends are starting to emerge. If you’re supporting any of the following workloads in your data center, liquid cooling may be in your future too:

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