5 facts about Iceland you might not know.

May 21, 2020

Hot springs, lava fields, geysers and rustic nature – most people are familiar with the gems of Iceland. But did you know that this Nordic nation is also an easily accessed tech hub with temperate climate and an abundance of renewable energy? In addition to being a beautiful vacation spot, these hidden attributes make Iceland a thriving business center with booming information communication technology (ICT) that’s attracting players around the world.

  1. Iceland leads Europe in high-tech workforce
  2. The threat of a volcano eruption is fake news
  3. Iceland doesn’t have Arctic climate
  4. Renewable energy sources make up 99% of Iceland’s electricity generation
  5. It’s easy to get to

We like to study, a lot.

Iceland not only topped the 2017 ICT Development Index (IDI), published by the UN International Telecommunication Union, but it’s been included in the index’s top five rankings since 2010. The Nordic country also ranked third in the digital and technological skills category of the 2019 IMD Competitiveness Report and took second spot in its communications technology category. Iceland, which boasts seven universities, is attracting high levels of investment and innovation in ICT and is home to a robust tech scene that includes data center service providers and a range of gaming, mobile and on-line gaming development companies.

We are not sitting on top of Volcanoes.

The Icelandic volcano made global headlines in 2010 when it erupted and blew ash towards Europe, grounding air traffic across the continent. The possibility of another eruption has made some investors edgy, despite leading UK volcanologists dismissing reports of imminent threat as scaremongering tactics. While there are active volcanoes in Iceland, most of them are located over 200 kilometers away from the data center hub in capital Reykjavik.

Not as cold as you might think.

January and February are Iceland’s coldest months with temperatures reaching 2° Cwhile in the summer temperatures can hit as high as 14° C. This climate with small fluctuations is optimal for running data centers that require predictable temperature patterns for keeping servers from overheating. Although cold spells aren’t uncommon in the winter, they’re short lived due to ocean currents and mild winds blowing from the south. Average temperatures in plains and coasts, where most Icelanders live, is around the freezing point so there’s no need for down suits and extreme cold protection.

We are sitting on top of renewable energy sources.

The bulk of Iceland’s electricity is derived using renewable energy sources, with 73% of electricity generated by hydropower plants and 26.8% from geothermal energy. Abundant renewable power and business-friendly environment have attracted investors seeking ways to curb the carbon footprint of their energy-exhaustive facilities, including aluminum smelters and data centers. About 90% of Icelandic households are heated with geothermal water, which also makes it possible to sustain large geothermal spas and other power-intensive projects.

We are easy to reach.

Iceland has the reputation as a remote island in the North Atlantic that’s cut off from bustling European capitals. But if you operate a data center out of Iceland, it’s actually less headache to reach the facilities than their counterparts in Sweden or Norway. Most data centers in Iceland are only a 10-minute drive from the Reykjavik airport while in Sweden and Norway you’re looking at an additional four hours of travelling after you land in Stockholm or Oslo.

Advania Data Centers’ ensure more compute for demanding enterprises. Do you want to find out why Iceland’s Advania Data Centers should be your next data center service provider?

*Photo by Lance Anderson on Unsplash

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