Sunday, August 02, 2015

UTSA and Microsoft establish sustainable energy research and development pact

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(April 16, 2014) -- The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) and Microsoft Corp. (Microsoft) announced today a three-year agreement to research and develop sustainable technologies to make data centers more energy efficient and economically viable.

In addition to the research agreement, Microsoft made a $1 million gift to UTSA to support the university's research and technology programs.

"Our objective is to bring together technology, economics and commercialization to create a smart intelligent energy system," said C. Mauli Agrawal, UTSA vice president for research. "We want to identify economically viable technologies that will reduce the environmental footprint of data centers."

The multi-disciplinary research will focus on expanding business opportunities for new distributed energy technology that reduces energy consumption and emissions, improves reliability and contributes to a sustainable energy future.

Microsoft is investing $250 million in a new 256,000 square foot data center next door to its existing 427,000 square foot facility in San Antonio. To have more control over the needed energy supply for the data center, the tech giant is working to address not only how electricity is used and distributed inside data centers but also how consumption of electricity impacts the broader grid.

Working with UTSA on energy solutions will enable the company to expand its commitment to optimizing for efficiency inside the facility, as well as its global data center portfolio. Additional benefits will be realized in integrating and investing in driving greater sustainability and scalable efficiencies in the broader energy supply chain.

"Distributed generation represents a major shift in the energy sector that will dramatically change how data centers operate," said Brian Janous, director of energy strategy at Microsoft. "The leadership of the Texas Sustainable Energy Research Institute at UTSA and the city of San Antonio were instrumental in bringing this research to a community like San Antonio."

Most data centers, by design, consume vast amounts of energy in order to adequately cool and maintain the computer servers they house. As companies' needs for data centers continue to rise, this research agreement between UTSA and Microsoft is a step toward finding sustainable solutions to enhance the overall performance of these facilities and reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions.

"Research partnerships like this are a game changer for San Antonio and UTSA," said UTSA President Ricardo Romo. "They enable UTSA to conduct innovative research in sustainable energy while positioning the city on the global business stage."

"Microsoft's partnership with UTSA is an important investment in San Antonio's continued rise as a center of innovation in the New Energy Economy," said San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro.

Overseeing much of the research is the Texas Sustainable Energy Research Institute at UTSA, which was established in 2010 to serve as a catalyst for coalescing the many energy research and education projects underway at the university. Specializing in the areas of energy, water and sustainability, the institute maintains strong partnerships with CPS Energy, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, private energy companies, universities and nonprofits.

 

 

Did You Know?

UTSA researcher is a star behind the cloud

A revolution in cloud computing is underway, and Ravi Sandhu believes it will be much bigger than the PC and Internet revolutions that have already changed the way we live. Sandhu, director of the UTSA Institute for Cyber Security, says UTSA is taking a leadership role in tackling three fundamental cloud technology problems: how to build and operate the cloud, how to use it profitably for diverse applications and how to keep it secure.

Sandhu, the Lutcher Brown Distinguished Chair in Cyber Security in the College of Sciences, and Ram Krishnan, assistant professor of electrical engineering in the UTSA College of Engineering, are funded by a $500,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to improve cloud security.

Did you know? Sandhu, a world-renowned cybersecurity expert, holds 30 patents, has authored more than 250 papers and been cited more than 30,000 times.

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Events
Aug. 1, 9 p.m.

"Inside Peace" documentary screening

This documentary, presented by the San Antonio Film Festival, documents the experience of re-entry after incarceration. The film features Michael Gilbert, associate professor in the department of criminal justice and director of the Office of Community and Restorative Justice program at UTSA.
Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Circle

Aug. 4, 6 - 8 p.m.

Free Teacher Tuesday: Los Tejanos Workshop

Discover resources and strategies for teaching Tejano history and culture and get a special educator's tour of the new long-term exhibit, Los Tejanos.
Institute of Texan Cultures, 801 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.

Aug. 6, 5 - 7 p,m,; 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

6th Annual Texas Higher Education Symposium

This annual symposium is an opportunity to discuss Texas higher education issues and trends with Texas higher education scholars, state and local government officials, students, and campus and local community members.
Downtown Campus

Aug. 9, 12 - 5 p.m.

Vaquerocation 2015

This cowboy-themed programming, offered in conjunction with Our Kids Magazine's Kidcation Week, gives families the opportunity to visit with cowboy docents, enjoy readings and visit activity tables.
Institute of Texan Cultures, 801 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.

Aug. 17, 11:30 p.m.

Midnight Light

Join President Ricardo Romo, The Spirit of San Antonio Marching Band, students, faculty and staff to light the monument at the Main Campus entrance at the stroke of midnight.
John Peace Boulevard Entrance, Main Campus

Aug. 18, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

President's BBQ on the Plaza

Join university President Ricardo Romo on the Bill Miller Plaza for his annual free BBQ lunch.
Bill Miller Plaza, Downtown Campus

Aug. 18, 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

President's BBQ on the Lawn

Join university President Ricardo Romo on the Convocation Center lawn for his annual free BBQ lunch.
Convocation Center East Lawn, Main Campus

Aug. 22, 6 p.m.

UTSA Alumni Gala

The UTSA Alumni Association hosts this annual gala honoring the Alumna of the Year, Alumnus of the Year and the Alumnus of the Year Lifetime Achievement award winners.
Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort & Spa, 9800 Hyatt Resort Dr.


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