2022 Bitmain World Digital Mining Summit (WDMS) was held in Cancun, Mexico. The vast potential of the new series of Bitmain hydrominers was a recurring theme at the event.
This post will delve into Bitmain’s latest Antminer S19 XP Hydro miner and the mining container cooling systems constituting the present and future realities of Bitcoin’s hydro-mining infrastructure.
In what is unmistakably a sign of the direction this ever-evolving industry is going, liquid-cooled hardware has quickly become the newest iteration of Bitcoin mining infrastructure technology.
The industry is thus forced into a consistently steep rate of innovation because of a fundamentally simple (and what some people refer to as beautiful) economic structure created to make Bitcoin mining extremely competitive. The S19 XP Hydro is a cutting-edge ASIC with a functionally sleek appearance that provides a more affordable miner than earlier air-cooled models.
Bitmain and other ASIC producers have gone a step further by creating shipping containers that house cooling systems and the liquid-cooled miners themselves, which pump and cool the liquid used to boost mining efficiency. Let’s examine the most recent market insights, the origins of liquid cooling miners, and the opportunities made possible by hydro-mining infrastructure.
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Why Are Liquid Cooling Systems Becoming Popular?
Similar to how internal combustion engines naturally transitioned from air to liquid cooling, the demand for liquid-cooled ASIC miners is inevitable. Since both devices have analog parts, they both have to contend with the effects of excessive heat, vibration, and the buildup of foreign debris.
Industry leaders have anticipated the long-term advantages of mining with hardware that makes the most of electricity while extending the life of each machine, reducing what is known as the miner death rate and increasing overall efficiency, as was the focus at this year’s WDMS. For the current stage of ASIC evolution, the introduction of liquid-cooling techniques has been crucial.
The Limitations of Air-cooled ASICs
Even with facilities that have sophisticated ventilation and air filtration systems and improvements in miner chip design, traditional air-cooled miners still experience diminishing returns. The reason for this is that conventional methods can only reduce heat, vibration, and foreign debris to a certain extent before a machine’s functional life is adversely affected.
Fans must be used to circulate air for air cooling, which generates noise and vibration and allows for the presence of airborne particles that can disrupt both electrical and mechanical operations. The lifespan of computers is known to be shortened by such particles that pass through keyboards.
As a result, the Antminer S19 XP Hydro and other liquid-cooling miners have a sleek appearance. Hydro-miners disperse heat, completely seal away outside debris, and even significantly reduce noise generation without the need for fans or airflow.
The Bitmain Antminer S19 XP Hydro
How much of an improvement, then, do we actually see from the Antminer S19 XP Hydro? Let’s compare its specifications to those of the air-cooled equivalent.
Antminer S19 XP Hydro Specifications
|Specs||Antminer S19 XP Hydro||Antminer S19 XP|
|Processing performance (TH/s)||250||140|
|Energy consumption (W)||5200 (@35°C)||3010 (@25°C)|
|Power efficiency (J/TH)||20.8 (@35°C)||21.5 (@25°C)|
As you can see, processing performance has increased, despite the fact that power efficiency has not. Your mining operation will have a smaller environmental impact as a result, using fewer miners to produce the same amount of material.
It should be emphasized that liquid-cooling techniques also lower the fatality rate among miners, increasing the unit’s overall output. Keep in mind that more effective miners also mean less harmful overclocking.
Overclocking is a technique whereby miners’ performance is improved while consuming more power than is typically allowed. If done properly, overclocking can raise the productivity of your miners.
Is the Antminer S19 XP Hydro Available to Order?
It is possible to order the Antminer S19 XP Hydro for shipping beginning in January 2023. But there’s a problem. As of this writing, units must be ordered in large quantities due to the liquid pumping and cooling systems needed to run these miners. A typical package consists of the miners themselves and a 20-foot shipping container that houses the systems for pumping, cooling, and reservoirs.
It’s not new for people to mine bitcoins using shipping containers. They give mining equipment a convenient, adaptable frame that is simple to transport while protecting it from the elements. To accommodate infrastructure for hydro-mining, manufacturers have already begun to modify shipping containers.
Bitmain’s Antspace HK3
For instance, consider Antspace HK3 from Bitmain. This is a 20-foot shipping container that includes all of the power management tools, liquid pumps and coolers, and other components required to run liquid-cooled ASIC miners like the Antminer S19 XP Hydro. One Antspace HK3 has the capacity to store and run up to 210 mining units, each of which consumes about 1MW of power.
Liquid Immersion Systems
The extra step of fully submerging ASIC miners is another modern practice in liquid-cooled mining. This kind of system has slightly different setup requirements, but it operates under the same general principles of heat and noise dissipation, foreign debris elimination, and maximizing mining efficiency.
Mining rigs are immersed in a thermally conductive liquid bath, typically dielectric oil, as part of immersion cooling, also known as liquid submersion cooling. The dielectric oil absorbs the heat produced by the drilling rigs and radiates it away from the machinery. Pumps are used to circulate the oil, and fans and external radiators are used to remove heat from the system. Like water cooling, immersion cooling increases the lifespan of the mining rig, reduces e-waste, permits overclocking, and permits heat recycling. However, immersion cooling has some drawbacks, including being more expensive than the majority of other effective cooling options, being difficult to scale up, and taking a while to clean off the oil when miners need maintenance, which happens inevitably.
The Disadvantages of Liquid Cooling
There are particular things to think about before purchasing this equipment, regardless of whether you plan to use internally liquid-cooled units like the Antminer S19 XP Hydro or implement liquid immersion systems.
It should be noted that this option requires more capital. Liquid-cooled ASICs need a separate cooling system in addition to an electrical connection, whereas conventional air-cooled ASICs are plug-and-play devices that only need an electrical connection. This implies taking into account the extra cost of the cooling system and any specialized servicing needs that arise, which call for trained personnel.
Second, if the cooling system’s flow rate is off, these units’ potential efficiency gains will be lost. Liquid has a greater capacity for heat transfer than air, explaining the usefulness of liquid-cooling, but a flow rate that is either too fast or too slow restricts the heat exchange process, which can both lead to overheating in your miners.
Finally, pay close attention to the substance used in liquid-cooled mining. Your miners’ productivity can be further increased by using coolants like dielectric fluids. Water is also frequently used, but testing is necessary to make sure that your reservoir doesn’t contain minerals that will quickly clog and corrode your system.
Inevitable Innovation in Bitcoin Mining Infrastructure
We will undoubtedly continue to see fascinating new technologies emerge as miners compete for hashing power as we watch the game theory behind the vision outlined in the Bitcoin whitepaper unfold. Miners continue to develop new technologies even as the price of bitcoin is currently hovering around its multi-year low of USD $21K.
Source: Asic Jungle