How much AC power do you need? (BTU)

Hi there,

I want to share with you some basic math to calculate how powerful your AC unit needs to be when it comes to cooling down your server room.

As we know, servers generate heat when they are working. While a desktop 3node will generate under 20W at idle and a server 3node might use 100W at idle, when you pile up some 3nodes desktops/servers in the same location, things can get pretty warm when cultivation on the Grid is happening. Indeed, when your servers will be using a lot of power, especially in the summer time, you might need some additional cooling.

A good thing about servers generating heat is that this can be used as a heat source in the winter. Other more advanced techniques can be used to maximize the heat production. But that’s for another post!

So let’s do the calculation:

How Much BTU does your Threefold Farm Need to Cool Your Servers?

It’s pretty simple actually. You need to keep in mind that 1 kW of power is equivalent to 3413 BTU (Britisth Thermal Unit).

So with our idle server example running at 100W, we have 0.1 kW. This is 341.3 BTU.

Say you have 5 servers like this. It means you have 5*341.3 = 1706.5 BTU

Thus, a 2000 BTU Air Conditioner would be able to compensate for the heat when your servers are at idle.

Please take note that this does not take into account the energy needed to cool down your environment. You’d need to take into consideration the heat of the servers and the general heat of your environment to figure out how much BTU your AC needs in the big heat days of the summer.

But then, what happens at cultivation? Well, say your server needs 400W of power when it’s being cultivated by Threefold Users of the New Internet.

Then, you’d need four times more BTU (400W=4*100W). It would thus be 6826 BTU needed from the AC unit for 5 servers running each at 400W. In that case, a 8000 BTU AC unit would be sufficient. Let’s say your environment would typically need 4000 BTU to cool the room, you’d need about 12000 BTU AC unit for the whole setup.

Now you can have a better idea of how much BTU is necessary for your AC unit. Of course, this can be a useful piece of data to incorporate in your simulation of Revenue/Cost farming.

The general equation would then be:

Server Power in kW * 3413 * Number of Servers = Total BTU needed per Threefold Farm

As another example, 7 servers using 120 W of power at idle would need:

0.12 * 3413 * 7 = 2866.92 BTU

During cultivation, these 7 servers might use 480 W. This would be:

0.48 * 3413 * 7 = 11467.68 BTU

To be sure everything’s OK, this set up would need a 12 000 BTU AC unit to compensate for the heat generated by the Threefold Farm during full cultivation.

That’s it!

Please tell us in the comments what you think. If you have advice or suggestions, you’re welcome to share your thoughts.

Let’s Farm!


Over a year later and I’m using this post!

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Is your garage renovation coming to an end?

They’re breaking ground today. If the whole rack actually goes full throttle a typical sized mini split won’t be able to keep up, but that’s unlikely to occur.

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Glad to read this! For reference, it is now on the TF Manual at this link:

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What is your farm ID? I wanted to do some heavy workload testing today :stuck_out_tongue: