Innovation That Matters

Hydroelectric crypto-mining | Photo source Shutterstock

Cryptocurrency mining company uses green energy


Austrian startup has built cryptocurrency mining facilities that run on hydroelectricity, reducing running costs of powering mining hardware.

While cryptocurrency continues to gather greater recognition and spawns more innovations, as we’ve seen recently with an app that converts users’ spare change into their cryptocurrency of choice, now a startup has found a way to increase its profit margins — by mining with cheaper, renewable energy.

Austria-based HydroMiner is in the process of scaling up a project that uses hardware powered by hydroelectricity to mine cryptocurrencies. Mining is the process by which digital transactions are verified, creating new ‘money’, by adding a codified stamp of authenticity to the blockchain, or the digital ledger on which cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin are built, the miner is given fractions of the currency as a reward. Mining traditionally requires a large financial investment in dedicated hardware that must run continuously and a process where there is no guarantee of profit. However, HydroMiner have now built facilities, inside sea freight containers near hydroelectric plants on rivers just outside of Vienna, where electricity bills are 85-percent lower than the average. The efficient cooling systems are powered by water, which help create these greater potential profit margins.

The next stage is adding more of these specialized mining facilities and renting them out to other miners to avoid startup costs, as well as access to proprietary software that keeps the operation secure and functioning and expert guidance on hand if necessary. To do this, HydroMiner is currently undergoing a form of crowdfunding unique to cryptocurrency, an ICO (Initial Coin Offering), where users can buy into the project by purchasing etherium (ETH) ‘H20’ tokens, underwritten by smart contracts that, if all goes well, will see profit shared between investors down the line.

Cryptocurrency has already popped up in an array of industries to streamline processors such as paying international freelancers immediately, rather than with the delay of international bank transactions. Where else will we see their uptake?



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