Data Center-Enabled High Altitude Platforms: A Green Computing Alternative

Wiem Abderrahim, Osama Amin, Basem Shihada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Information technology organizations and companies are seeking greener alternatives to traditional terrestrial data centers to mitigate global warming and reduce carbon emissions. Currently, terrestrial data centers consume a significant amount of energy, estimated at about 1.5% of worldwide electricity use. Furthermore, the increasing demand for data-intensive applications is expected to raise energy consumption, making it crucial to consider sustainable computing paradigms. In this study, we propose a data center-enabled High Altitude Platform (HAP) system, where a flying data center supports the operation of terrestrial data centers. We conduct a detailed analytical study to assess the energy benefits and communication requirements of this approach. Our findings demonstrate that a data center-enabled HAP is more energy-efficient than a traditional terrestrial data center, owing to the naturally low temperature in the stratosphere and the ability to harvest solar energy. Adopting a data center-HAP can save up to 14% of energy requirements while overcoming the offloading outage problem and the associated delay resulting from server distribution. Our study highlights the potential of a data centerenabled HAP system as a sustainable computing solution to meet the growing energy demands and reduce carbon footprint.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAccepted by IEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing (TMC)
StatePublished - Sep 17 2023

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2023-09-18


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