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The blockchain mining technology landscape is changing. Discovering new blocks and recording transactions on a global ledger has always been a resource-intensive endeavor. Lately, block reward miners have started to experiment with new technologies that might reduce the cost of supporting blockchain networks.
One such company is U.S.-based Riot Blockchain (NADAQ: RIOT), which recently announced it would soon test a new 8-megawatt immersion cooling technology at their Texas facility. This project is a joint venture with Enigma Digital Assets AG and Lancium, LLC.
Riot’s goal is to evaluate solutions for efficient block reward mining in challenging temperature environments. The Nasdaq-listed company will deploy the new liquid cooling technology for ASIC mining hardware.
The proof of concept will test Enigma’s next-generation immersion technology created to increase mining productivity alongside Lancium’s Smart Response software, which reduces energy costs. Riot scheduled the pilot program to start in Q1 2021.
“Enigma’s innovative solutions appear to offer a very meaningful improvement on installed cost and productivity. Lancium’s power-ramping and trading expertise perfectly complements this by delivering an innovative solution to provide the pilot project with low-cost, optimized electricity,” said Michael McNamara, Lancium’s CEO.
Jeff McGonegal, CEO of Riot, added, “We are pleased to announce the pilot project and look forward to advancing the company’s relationships with Lancium and Enigma…When combined, both technologies have the potential to reduce Riot’s bitcoin production costs, increase hash rates, and significantly extend the life of the company’s bitcoin mining ASICs.”
In high heat and humidity regions like Texas, cooling ASIC mining machines with liquid immersion instead of air could offer advantages for block reward miners operating on thin profit margins. The cooling method reduces heat, dust, and humidity issues. Not only does liquid cooling provide considerable noise reduction when compared with cooling fans, but immersion cooling might also increase the usable hash rate per ASIC miner by up to 50%.
During the pilot project, Lancium will provide 8 MW of power. The company dedicates the initial 3 MW to a current-generation Enigma immersion module used by Bitmain S19-Pro ASIC miners. It will make the additional 5 MW available for Enigma’s next-generation immersion module solution, set to launch in early 2021.
Riot will control the pilot project with Enigma providing the immersion containers and Lancium licensing its Smart Response software. If successful, the companies may expand the pilot project to larger-scale sites.