New desktop computing technology is being rolled out at Hanford that is expected to reduce computing energy use by 90 percent.
"Thin client," or small computer desktop components that communicate with a centralized server, will replace traditional central processing units, or CPUs.
"It is really a win-win for the environment and for Hanford computer users," said Terry Wentz, vice president of information technology for Mission Support Alliance, the Hanford support services contractor, in a statement.
Thin clients boot up in as little as 30 seconds, increase cyber security by housing data in a central location, increase desktop space and automatically update software, he said.
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The thin client devices save and consolidate information on one centralized data center instead of housing documents and data on a physical computer hard drive.
Then the thin client device accesses and retrieves requested data from the centralized data center.
The system will allow Hanford workers to work from anywhere on any device, according to Mission Support Alliance.
The thin client devices need to be updated about every eight years, while traditional CPUs need to be changed out at Hanford every four years, according to Mission Support Alliance.
As workers need their CPUs replaced, they will receive the thin client devices.
Maintenance also could cost less. When a traditional CPU system malfunctions, the entire system may need to be replaced, but only the small computer desktop component would need to be replaced under the thin client system.
Because the thin client system uses substantially less power to operate, it should help avoid about 1.5 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions in five years, according to Mission Support Alliance.