Overclocking ASIC Miners with Immersion Cooling
Over-clocking is a way of ‘tuning’ your computer by increasing the clock frequency and voltage of the CPU. The CPU is the brain of your computer.
Since we have had electronic or mechanical piece of hardware people have been drawn to the rush of greater performance. They are always trying to tweak their equipment to get the very last possible effect out of it. Just in order to cross formerly impossible borders and to push the barriers of what is physically possible at any given time.
The whole concept of overclocking started with the ‘gamer-nerds’ and ‘tech-freaks’ wanting to squeeze every last drop of calculating power out of their PC’s, so they could play bigger and more ressource demanding games and applications without having to constantly upgrade their expensive hardware. Hardware had to be upgraded on a regular basis in order to follow the ever demanding criteria for better and more computing power.
Immersion cooling is the solution
That’s why some guys from – fx. Pugetsystems – back in 2007 came up with the idea of ‘immersion cooling’ their PC’s, where they lowered the components without the cabinet / tower into a non-conductive mineral oil in an aquarium – for optimal dispersion of the heat and the ability to remove the noisy fans.
This trend of overclocking has moved into the cryptomining industry. ASIC and GPU miner operators are tweaking their devices to let them calculate to their very limits. A limit that has turned into a game of money. Only the most cutting-edge and most profitable miners survive.
If we look at one of the newest bitcoin mining machines – an Antminer S17+ from Bitmain – then 1-2 of these consume as much power as a standard 4 person family does in a year! Imagine the amount of heat such machines expel, too?! And if you overclock it, then it performs even higher but also expels more heat.
Staying cool vs. noise
One way to get rid of all this heat is to spin up the cooling fans on the unit (normally automated by machine/firmware). But that just makes it more noisy. Noise is not a problem, if you place your device in one of our data centers in Siberia. There the ambient yearly temperature is always low and the fans spin slower, thus lowering the strain on your equipment.
Another way is to immersion cool it – just like with the PCs (immersion is the action of lowering someone or something into a liquid) – in a special non-conductive oil (mineral oil is no longer sufficient) in big tanks with several miners in the same vat. This makes the cooling more overall and increases the life expectancy of the equipment with up to 10-15%. You are also able to remove the noisy fans and overclock your gear even more for less or the same electricity spent.
MeaTec can overclock your devices
This results in lower power consumption and hosting bills. But this extra capacity and overall cooler machines allow MeaTec to overclock the equipment with our custom built firmware. Just a tad more than it’s usually possible without damaging the equipment. That way you get EVERY last drop out of your precious mining hardware for a longer time. Currently, we are able to reach around 73 TH/s from an Antminer S17 Pro 53 TH/s (so an increase up to about 135% on the same hardware) when air cooled.
Immersion cooling technology and equipment is more expensive from the CapEx side of things, but in the long run it pays off, if you scale big enough. MeaTec will look into being able to host immersion cooled ASIC miners for our clients.