Caterpillar announced that LCL Data Centers, the operator of five independent data centers in Belgium, has commissioned a new 13.5 MVA standby power solution at its LCL Brussels-West data center in Aalst that operates exclusively on 100% hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) fuel. It is the first data center in the nation to use biofuels for standby power operation.
Facility planners for LCL leveraged the expertise of engineering experts from Eneria, the local Cat® dealer, to design, install, test and commission the solution, which consists of six Cat® 3516B diesel generator sets.
“With our deep roots in Belgium, we are committed to supporting environmentally responsible initiatives that create a better world,” said Laurens van Reijen, managing director of LCL. “Our collaboration with Eneria and Caterpillar has demonstrated the viability of HVO100 in our standby power systems. We’re strongly committed to becoming carbon-neutral by the end of this decade, and we’ve launched numerous initiatives across our operations to help us achieve this goal.”
Eneria will also provide ongoing maintenance and service under a Cat Customer Value Agreement (CVA). Through fully customizable CVAs, Cat dealers assume responsibility for the on-site maintenance and service of power solutions, enabling customers to focus on running their enterprises.
“We were delighted to receive the request from the data center specialist LCL to ensure its emergency power generators operate on HVO100, a renewable diesel fuel. We tested the operation of Cat generator sets with traditional diesel, HVO100, and a blend of these fuels. We concluded that the power and reactivity performance of the generators remained the same regardless of the fuel used,” said Tim Bisson, director of Eneria Belux, a specialist in renewable energy supply and emergency power installations in Belgium.
Propelled by the success of the project in Aalst, LCL plans to convert the standby power solutions at all its data centers to operate on HVO over the next two years.
The standby system was installed as part of a €15.5 million expansion that tripled LCL’s footprint in Aalst while achieving the Uptime Institute’s Tier III certifications for design and construction.
“For over a decade, Caterpillar has enabled operation on renewable fuels that helps our customers achieve their climate-related objectives, said Bart Myers, vice president for Caterpillar’s Large Electric Power Division. “The standby system installed by Eneria for LCL demonstrates the powerful combination of our advanced technologies, the expertise of the Cat dealer network, and a forward-looking customer-driven perspective to make a difference.”
LCL’s Commitment to Sustainability
The initiative to use HVO for standby power reflects LCL’s deep and growing support for sustainability. In 2021, LCL joined the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact, a self-regulated initiative by dozens of European data center operators and trade associations to achieve climate neutrality by 2030. As part of this program, LCL joined the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) in November 2021 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from its data centers.
In November, LCL announced the expansion of its solar photovoltaic capabilities at its LCL Wallonia One data center in Gembloux. Once completed, the solar park can generate up to 1.6 MW of power.
Power Solutions for Customers’ Sustainability Initiatives
Caterpillar helps customers achieve their climate-related goals by providing products that facilitate fuel transition, increased operational efficiency and reduced emissions. This support includes commercially available power solutions capable of operating on hydrogen fuel; Distributed Energy Resource Management System (DERMS) software solutions for monitoring, managing, and monetizing on-site energy assets; a full hybrid energy solutions technology suite; Cat cogeneration CHP systems and combined cooling, heat and power (CCHP) systems; and support for HVO, biodiesel, and blended fuel products.
Caterpillar delivers innovative power systems engineered for sustainability, durability, reliability and value. The company offers worldwide product support, parts and services, and customer value agreements through the Cat dealer network. In addition, dealer technicians are trained to provide a comprehensive range of maintenance and services that help customers optimize the total cost of ownership of Cat equipment.