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As computing and data storage increasingly become a globally-available, public utility, the proliferation of large numbers of servers and massive data centers will have a substantial energy footprint in our future. The typical server consumes as much energy in one year as an SUV. Worldwide, businesses now spend $30 billion to power their data centers, and that cost is growing rapidly. Energy expenditures are already becoming more significant than the cost of machines, making energy efficiency of critical importance to our future information technology infrastructure and natural environment.
The goal of the Greenscale Center is to leverage key strengths at UCSB to face the new millenium’s energy challenges. Energy-efficient computing can not be achieved without the interplay between computer science, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, and environmental science. Designing tomorrow’s large-scale computing systems will require a vertically-integrated effort to drive key energy-efficient technologies in computing, electronics, and building systems. Collectively, these technologies address very significant near-term and long-term energy challenges and their impact will require evaluation in economic and environmental terms.