Facebook's North Carolina data center  (Source:
According to Facebook, over 2,000 people and 1.2 million hours of work went into the social network's latest data center

Facebook announced yesterday that its new North Carolina data center is up and running after 16 months of development.

The Facebook data center is located in Forest City, North Carolina, and will serve live user traffic. According to Facebook, over 2,000 people and 1.2 million hours of work went into the social network's latest data center.

Facebook, which has 845 million users, noted that its Forest City data center is the first large-scale deployment of the v2 OpenCompute Project web servers. These servers are also some of the first to use Intel's Sandy Bridge processor.

In addition, Facebook proudly mentioned that its N.C. data center will be one of the most energy efficient in the world with a projected power utilization effectiveness (PuE) measurement of 1.06 to 1.08 for the whole data center. It will also be one of the first to live test the Open Compute Project's outdoor air cooling systems.

"Of course, our work here is by no means done," said Facebook. "Right now, we're making great progress on a second building on the site that mirrors the first, and are on track to complete it in 2012. We are also committed to keep evolving the technologies and designs at the facility, and are excited to be growing one of the world's most energy efficient data centers in your backyard."

It's a funny coincidence that Facebook's Forest City data center is online only days after independent environmental organization Greenpeace released a report that exposed huge tech companies' use of clean and dirty energy. Facebook was on that list with a 36.4 percent Clean Energy Index score. Greenpeace also said Facebook had 39.4 percent coal dependency, and grades of "D" in energy transparency, "B" in infrastructure siting, "B" in energy efficiency and GHG mitigation, and "C" in renewables and advocacy.

The company who really took a beating on the Greenpeace score sheet was Apple, which had a 15.3 percent Clean Energy Index score and a whopping 55.1 percent coal usage. In the same categories listed for Facebook, Apple received grades of "D," "F," "D" and "D."

Apple argued that it was making a valid effort with its Maiden, North Carolina data center, which it launched last spring for iCloud and iTunes support. Apple's North Carolina data center is a 100-acre, 20-megawatt facility that generates about 42 million kWh of clean energy on an annual basis.

Source: Facebook

"We are going to continue to work with them to make sure they understand the reality of the Internet.  A lot of these people don't have Ph.Ds, and they don't have a degree in computer science." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis

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