Maiden Stories July 7, 2014

 

Apple Solar Center

The city of Claremont, NC has agreed to annex the land necessary for Apple to build a third solar farm near its data center in Maiden, the Hickory Daily Record reported (via MacRumors). Apple will make an initial investment of $55 million and indirectly create 75 jobs while constructing the 17.5-megawatt farm, which will be located at 3123 Kelly Blvd.

The farm won’t actually be located at the Maiden data center—or even in the city of Maiden, for that matter—though it will still be located in the same county as the other property.

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Maiden Stories April 24, 2014

Lisa Jackson gives NBC’s Today a look inside of Apple’s North Carolina data center

Apple gave NBC’s Today a rare look inside its Maiden, NC data center during a segment on the company’s efforts to use more green energy (via AppleInsider). Apple’s NC data center is powered entirely by reusable energy, including a massive solar farm and on-site biogas cells.

Jackson notes that Apple sometimes generates even more solar power than it needs, which allows the excess to go toward supplying energy to the city’s power grid

The segment also includes a look at the inner workings of the data center, which serves as the center of Apple’s iCloud and other online operations. You can see the entire clip below.

Maiden Stories September 14, 2012

New aerial shots of Apple’s North Carolina data center show almost complete solar farm

Apple is making a lot of progress with construction in and around its Maiden, N.C., data center. An almost-complete 100 acre solar farm is pictured in the above aerial shots provided to GigaOm by WCNC-TV.

Maiden Stories August 2, 2012

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Wired just published aerial shots of Apple’s data center in Maiden, N.C. from Monday, when construction crews were in the midst of laying foundation for a large structure in a northwest sylvan area, and it appears the company has just begun assembling its Bloom Energy fuel cells for biogas conversion.

According to Wired:

Our flyover captured some pretty clear images of the tactical data center, the massive solar array, and, of course, this new mystery building.

Check out some closeups of the parts below, and Wired for full gallery and details.

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Maiden Stories April 17, 2012

Greenpeace says iCloud powered with ‘dirty coal energy’

Despite Apple currently constructing one of the nation’s largest solar arrays and expanding its North Carolina data centers, Greenpeace just released its “How Clean is Your Cloud” report claiming Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft “are powering their growing 21st-century clouds with dirty, 19th-century coal energy.” The organization is urging consumers to read the 50-page report and then contact the companies mentioned to convince them to change their approach when it comes to powering the cloud.

“If Apple is really interested in having the “high percentage” of renewable energy it claims to want for the iCloud, it will have to look beyond the initial steps for on-site generation and use its tremendous cash reserves to invest in or purchase renewable energy and also to put pressure on Duke Energy to to provide cleaner energy”

Apple issued a statement to various media outlets today in response (via NPR):

“Our data center in North Carolina will draw about 20 megawatts at full capacity, and we are on track to supply more than 60 percent of that power on-site from renewable sources including a solar farm and fuel cell installation which will each be the largest of their kind in the country,” said Kristin Huguet, an Apple spokesperson. “We believe this industry-leading project will make Maiden the greenest data center ever built, and it will be joined next year by our new facility in Oregon running on 100 percent renewable energy.”

Maiden Stories March 16, 2012

When Apple published its 2012 Facilities Report and Environmental Update, we got some new details on its plans for the now-under construction Maiden, N.C.-based iCloud data center. We reported that Apple planned to build the largest end user–owned onsite solar array in the United States across the road from the data center, as well as the largest non-utility fuel cell in the country at 5-megawatts. Today, Hickory Daily Record confirmed construction has officially begun.

…this week, work has started on the main campus of the data center. Driving by the campus, you can actually see the structure from the road. That’s because part of the berm — an earthen wall — has been demolished as part of some type of construction… What type of construction taking place on the main campus is not clear. No one is talking, or seems to know.

While it is unclear exactly what the new structure on the main campus will be, there are a few options swirling around. We know the 5-megawatt fuel cell will be next to the main data center, and the new building could house that installation. However, as HickoryDailyRecord pointed out, Maiden Town Manager Todd Herms said Apple originally planned to build two identical structures when it began construction of its Maiden data center. Apple only built one, so the new building could be the second building of the main data center.

The report noted Apple’s main contractor for data centers in area, Holder Construction, pulled zoning permits last week for a “tactical data center.” Another permit issued on Wednesday named 34 acres of the main data center campus. The current 500,000-square-foot building only occupies about 11.5 acres, so its possible the new building will be larger than the current data center. As we pointed out in our overhead shot of the data center pictured right (Thanks PilotJohn), the report also confirmed land is being cleared for the solar farm’s construction across the road. expand full story

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