A whitepaper has identified Stockholm as a prime location for data centres. From the capital of Sweden, data centre operators and service providers can reach a market of 350 million users within 30 milliseconds of round-trip delay.
By targeting northern Europe and western Russia from Stockholm, data centres can also benefit from low-carbon electricity, the lowest electricity prices in the EU and an opportunity to receive payment for excess heat, which is used for residential heating in the city. The study has been produced by Telia Carrier, Invest Stockholm and Stockholm Data Parks.
In the whitepaper, the population of northern Europe was mapped and visualised. With the major metropolitan areas identified, the authors measured the round-trip delay (RTD) from Stockholm to various northern European Points-of-Presence (PoPs) within Telia Carrier’s #1 ranked global IP backbone, which connects the region’s major cities with minimal delay. All measurements were made using the carrier’s dedicated, multi-path fibre network and professional telecom equipment (providing more exact data than a simple ‘ping’ measurement). By combining the data, it was possible to estimate the market size reachable from Stockholm expressed as a function of the round-trip delay.
The whitepaper also explores how sensitive different applications are to network delay. It found that, with the exception of financial trading and software mirroring, there are few applications for which the user experience will be adversely affected by additional latency from remote server location in Stockholm. It concludes that for the northern European market, most applications can be efficiently served from data centres in the Swedish capital. In short, it was found that data centre relocation to Sweden, and Stockholm in particular, presents a compelling and sustainable opportunity for an energy-intensive industry to source cheap electricity with a low carbon footprint, while operating within acceptable latency limits. It is possible to implement a site location strategy for Northern Europe, whereby a significant share of users’ applications are hosted remotely in Stockholm – with competitive OPEX, real estate costs and mitigation of negative environmental effects through the use of renewable electricity sources and payment for reuse of excess heat. Significantly, this approach can deliver significant annual cost savings for data centre operators and their customers.