Microsoft and UTSA will work together to develop more sustainable technology to power huge and energy thirsty data center, like the one Microsoft operates in Westover Hills, 1200 WOAI news reports.
The agreement, announced today at a pep rally hosted by UTSA President Ricardo Romo, also includes a $1 million grant from the Washington-based software giant to UTSA.
Data centers are where 'cloud computing' lives. They include racks upon racks of computers which store every imaginable type of data, and use large amounts of energy.
UTSA says the goal is to come up with greater sustainability and scalable efficiencies in that energy generating system.
"Distributed generation represents a major shift in the energy sector that will dramatically change how data center operate," Brian Janous, director of energy strategy at Microsoft told the pep rally. "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."
Microsoft will build a quarter billion dollar data center next door to its existing facility to be used in the research.
UTSA's work in sustainable energy is already well established. Dr. Les Shepard, who heads the Research Institute, is recognized as a worldwide leader in the new energy economy.
Mayor Castro said the announcement is a key part of the 'new knowledge economy' which has made San Antonio a center for young college graduates.
"This project will help to insure that more students and faculty have the opportunity to do more research that is cutting edge, that is innovative," Castro said.
CPS Energy will also be a key part of the project. The local city-owned utility is also a model in the creation of sustainable energy projects, and is a leader in wind and solar power technology.