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一家俄罗斯核电站正在为渴望能源的比特币矿工租用空间

2020-1-9 16:07

俄罗斯乌多姆利亚——俄罗斯一家国有核电站可能很快会成为比特币开采中心的燃料。


上个月底,俄罗斯国家原子能公司(Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation)在莫斯科西北200英里处的乌多姆利亚(Udomlya)的加里宁(Kalinin)核电站附近开设了一个采矿农场。俄罗斯国家原子能公司(Rosatom)的子公司Rosenergoatom的数据中心和数字产品主管谢尔盖?


Nemchenkov说,Rosenergoatom没有开采自己的计划。相反,它将利用这个机会向重度用户出售额外的电力,并为他们的设备租用空间,类似于该公司在电厂附近建造的一个数据中心。


"数据中心和矿商都是能源消耗大户,需求稳定," Nemchenkov说。“对我们来说,这是一种多样化的方式。”


国际货币基金组织(IMF)和世界银行(world Bank)的数据显示,俄罗斯国家原子能公司是俄罗斯第一家与政府有关联的大型实体,它与矿业公司建立了合作关系。俄罗斯是全球第11大经济体。随着计划最终将240兆瓦甚至更多的电力从几个地方输送到该行业,该公司可能会成为全球市场上一个引人注目的参与者。


为了更好地理解这一数字,中国矿业巨头Bitmain在德克萨斯州罗克代尔(Rockdale)正在建设的工厂预计一开始的产能为25至50兆瓦,最终将扩大至300兆瓦。在同一城镇建造的另一个设施将从300兆瓦起步,最终达到1千兆瓦;这两家公司都号称是世界上最大的。


卡里宁厂(建于1974年,一位政治家正式命名的苏联从1919年至1946年)是另一个例子的矿工在俄罗斯嵌套接近老工业网站,像吸引的废弃的工厂在西伯利亚矿工们来自世界各地。


在乌多姆利亚,一块面积约为21.5万平方英尺的长方形场地,预计可容纳30个集装箱,每个集装箱可容纳近400台独立的采矿电脑。

 

矿工的电费将是每千瓦时4到5美分,这不是全球最便宜的价格,因为在中国和哈萨克斯坦的一些地区,电费低于4美分。


但是Rosenergoatom想要推广这个项目,首先,作为一种合法的、有信誉的方式来开采加密货币,就在能源生产商的财产上。


“这完全是一项白交易,”Nemchenkov说。


为了找到客户,Rosenergoatom与ecosm合作。ecosm是一家矿业酒店公司,是场馆和矿工之间的中间人。ecosm于2017年在亚美尼亚成立,最初是在该国的哈拉兹丹(Hrazdan)热电厂附近建造了一个采矿场地。


ecosm管理合伙人Ilya Goldberg表示,迄今为止,ecosm已在Hrazdan设立了两个集装箱,但希望能大幅扩展,因为该基地的潜在容量可达200兆瓦。


但是与Rosenergoatom的合作,他说对ecosm来说“非常舒服”,甚至更有希望。


Nemchenkov说,如果ecosm设法填满了Udomlya fast的油田,Rosenergoatom将开放其他采矿场地。


“这是我们计划与之长期合作的公司,”他说。


根据签署的谅解备忘录(MOU) ECOS-M和Rosenergoatom今年2月,除了Udomlya,四个Rosatom场馆可能会在未来几年向矿工,他们两个在西伯利亚,一个在摩尔曼斯克的北部地区,一个在西方的加里宁格勒飞地。


Nemchenkov说,其中一个场馆位于西伯利亚的Seversk镇,是一个特别雄心勃勃的项目:该项目的潜在容量可达200兆瓦,预计在建设初期可容纳84个集装箱,每个容量为1兆瓦。


谅解备忘录称,在Kolskaya和波罗的海核电站以及Angarsk电解化工厂附近,还有大约130兆瓦的可用电力在等待矿工使用。


对于Rosenergoatom来说,建造用于出租的采矿场地是该公司成为大型数据中心提供商的雄心的副产品。


政治形势有利于这一业务:12月初,俄罗斯通过了一项法律,禁止在海外存储俄罗斯公民的个人数据。


这意味着,任何处理俄罗斯人个人数据的公司都必须将其存储在俄罗斯境内的服务器上,否则将支付高达29万美元的罚款,并在俄罗斯遭到屏蔽。2016年通过的另一项法律要求所有电信公司将客户的通信数据存储最长三年,这进一步刺激了存储需求。


Nemchenkov说,乌多姆利亚的数据中心有一台备用柴油发电机,这确保了在加里宁(Kalinin)发电站去年因厂外变压器短路而短暂断电期间,客户可以不受干扰地使用。


他说,虽然矿区没有这样的发电机,但在极端情况下,停电只会持续一到两分钟。

 

Rosenergoatom似乎很重视与矿商的合作:根据Nemchenkov的说法,将有一个选择,即雇佣这家核能巨头的人员来管理采矿容器,并利用其工程和工业安全专业知识。Nemchenkov说,未来可能还会提供金属容器。


然而,该公司正在构建的基础设施可以服务于各种用例,Nemchenkov说。他说,如果有一天俄罗斯禁止加密,特别是禁止采矿,这个地方就可以升级,变成一个正常的数据中心。


“目前,我们可以招待矿工。如果采矿业的故事结束了,我们还可以举办其他活动,”Nemchenkov说。

 


UDOMLYA, Russia – A state-owned nuclear power plant in Russia may soon fuel a bitcoin mining hub.


Late last month, Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation opened a mining farm near the Kalinin nuclear plant in Udomlya, 200 miles northwest of Moscow. The company spent more than $4.8 million building the 30-megawatt facility, according to Sergei Nemchenkov, the head of data centers and digital products at Rosenergoatom, a Rosatom subsidiary.


Rosenergoatom isn’t planning to mine itself, Nemchenkov said. Rather, it will capitalize on the opportunity to sell additional electricity to heavy users and rent space for their equipment, similar to a data center the firm built near the plant.


"Both data centers and miners are large energy consumers with a stable demand," Nemchenkov said. "For us, it's a way to diversify."


Rosatom is the first big government-related entity to embrace miners in Russia, the world's eleventh-largest economy, according to the IMF and the World Bank. And with plans to eventually open 240 megawatts or more of its power from several locations to the industry, the company could become a notable player on the global market.


To put that number in perspective, Chinese mining giant Bitmain's facility under construction in Rockdale, Texas, is expected to start with a capacity of 25 to 50 megawatts and eventually expand to 300 megawatts. Another facility being built in the same town would start at 300 MW and eventually go up to 1 gigawatt; both are claiming the title of world's largest.


The Kalinin plant (built in 1974 and named after a statesman who was the formal head of the Soviet state from 1919 until 1946) is another example of miners in Russia nesting close to old industrial sites, like the abandoned factories in Siberia that are attracting miners from all over the world.


In Udomlya, a rectangular field of about 215,000 square feet is expected to fit up to 30 containers, each with room for almost 400 individual mining computers.


Electricity for miners will cost 4 to 5 cents per kilowatt-hour – not the cheapest price you can find around the globe, as rates lower than 4 cents can be found in some regions of China and Kazakhstan.


But Rosenergoatom wants to market the project, first of all, as a legitimate, reputable way to mine cryptocurrency, right on the energy producer’s property.


“It’s a totally white deal,” Nemchenkov said.


To find clients, Rosenergoatom partnered with ECOS-M, a mining hotel firm that serves as an intermediary between the venue and miners. Founded in 2017 in Armenia, ECOS-M started by building a mining venue near the country’s Hrazdan thermal power plant.


So far, ECOS-M has set up two containers in Hrazdan, but hopes to expand significantly as the potential capacity of the site is up to 200 megawatts, ECOS-M managing partner Ilya Goldberg said.


But the partnership with Rosenergoatom, which he says is “very comfortable” for ECOS-M, is even more promising.


If ECOS-M manages to fill the field in Udomlya fast, Rosenergoatom will open other venues for mining, said Nemchenkov.


“This is the company we’re planning to go a long way with,” he said.


According to the memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed by ECOS-M and Rosenergoatom in February, in addition to Udomlya, four more Rosatom venues might be filed with miners in the coming years, two of them in Siberia, one in the northern region of Murmansk and one in the Kaliningrad exclave in the West. 


One of these venues, located in the Siberian town of Seversk, is an especially ambitious project, Nemchenkov said: With a potential capacity up to 200 megawatts, the site is expected to fit 84 containers for one megawatt each at the beginning, after construction is finished, tentatively scheduled for late 2021.


Some 130 more megawatts of available electricity are waiting for miners near the Kolskaya and Baltic nuclear power plants and Angarsk Electrolysis Chemical Plant, according to the MOU.


For Rosenergoatom, building mining venues for rent is a by-product of the company’s ambition to become a large data center provider.


The political situation is conducive to this business: in early December, Russia passed a law prohibiting storage of Russian citizens’ personal data abroad.


This means any company dealing with Russians’ personal data will have to store it on servers inside Russia or pay up to $290,000 in fines and get blocked in the country. Another law, passed in 2016, requires all telecom companies to store their clients’ communication data for up to three years, further stimulating demand for storage.


The data center in Udomlya has a backup diesel generator, which ensured uninterrupted service for clients during a brief outage at the Kalinin power station last year caused by a short circuit in a transformer outside the plant, Nemchenkov said.


While the mining field doesn’t have such generators, an outage there in extreme conditions would only last one or two minutes, he said.


Rosenergoatom seems serious about working with miners: According to Nemchenkov, there will be an option to hire the nuclear giant’s personnel to take care of the mining containers and leverage its engineering and industrial safety expertise. It might also provide the metal containers in the future, Nemchenkov said.


However, the infrastructure the company is building can serve various use cases, Nemchenkov said. If one day Russia bans crypto, or mining in particular, the venue can be upgraded and turned into a normal data center, he said.


“For the time being, we can host miners. If the mining story is over, we can host something else,” Nemchenkov said.

原作者: Anna Baydakova 来自: coindesk