how they got in, what are their lives like? like

The miner of bitcoin Zack Pettit skates on his work break at the SCATE Ventures mining facility in Dallesport, Washington.

SCATE Ventures Inc.

Nick Sears was 17 when he helped build a bitcoin mining farm in Dallesport, Washington. He was 18 when he was legally authorized to buy bitcoin for the first time. And now, at 19, Sears has doubled down down on his life like bitcoin miner, saying “no” to college and “yes” to life in a room within a data center that houses 4,500 swirling ASICs.

“My room is sound- locked, “Sears said of acoustic retrofit of his home. “So I can’t hear the machines when I close the door, but they are definitely noisy if I have the door open. “

The machines generate about 80 decibels of noise each – but Sears says he likes to be as close to the action as possible. It also beats doing the half travel time each way from his parents’ house in White Salmon.

on 19 year- the old man spent practically every single day for the last two years teaching himself the nuances of how extraction machines work – and especially, how to fix they. He believes in his education in soldering and electronics is worth a lot more to him that a degree.

“I don’t think about going to college at all, just pursue further knowledge in repairs of the miners, “continued Sears.

CNBC spoke with more miners for this story. Many have explained that the charm of mining derives from knowing how to tangibly grasp the power of bitcoin.

“If you have been in some of these data centers, the first the thing you will notice is just how vast and how they are impressive. They’re huge, ”said Thomas Heller, chief business official for Compass Mining, which works with Sears employer, SCATE Ventures.

“There is so much noise, and there is so much heat. there is just so much action in course on. It’s pretty cool walk in a data center for the first time that is mining bitcoin, because you can really connect the intangibles of bitcoin as a currency, with the body nature of these machines to consume power and doing these calculations. ”

Bitcoin miner Nick Sears lives on- located at the SCATE Ventures mining farm in Dallesport, Washington.

SCATE Ventures Inc.

One day in the life of a miner

Extraction for bitcoin it’s not a glamorous job.

“When we first arrived here, we were settling up shelves, creating the network infrastructure for Internet, e in essentially we had to connect everything, “he said.

Once the physical infrastructure was up and running, Sears entered in more of a rhythm. he is now up at 7 in the morning every day and works from eight to four. He remains on site after, just in Case of an emergency, and there is a technician who works night shifts in so that Sears can get some sleep.

But beyond the hours, there is no typical work day for Sear.

“That’s the great thing about this job: I don’t have a set routines that I do every day, “she said.” Every morning, I find what it needs to be fixed. ”

Some days, that means Sears is repairing walls and other physical infrastructure. “If we have to repair a camera, maybe I’m repairing a cable. “

But the biggest part of the job is to monitor and manage each one of those 4,500 Bitmain and Whatsminer ASICs a ensure they are running 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Even if one of those machines goes offline or runs only at partial capacity, SCATE Ventures mine leaks money.

This is because when someone is checking out for bitcoin, what they are actually doing is lending theirs computer power to the bitcoin network. The more machines you have online, the greater your chances of winning bitcoin.

Plant under inspection at SCATE Ventures mining farm in Dallesport, Washington.

SCATE Ventures Inc.

Approximately every ten minutes 6.25 is created bitcoin. To coin these new tokens, a global pool of the miners are all contributing with their calculation power to the execution of a hashing algorithm. But these miners don’t work in a void. they are competing against each other to see who can unlock every batch of new bitcoin first.

So the mail in game is high for Sear. Be diligent and know how problem triage in the whole structure is critical to success.

Some mining sites use more sophisticated software to monitor the machines, which includes temperature control of each hashboard within the individual miners.

But the most important thing for Sears is just calculating out which of his machines they don’t work a full capacity.

“Every day you find the machines that have stopped hashing, so you remove them from the rack and troubleshoot, “he explained.” You need to find the problem with the machines. you have to find out because it went offline. “

It could be a power interruption, which would affect all machines, or it could be a network disruption that could impact everyone of the machines or just some.

“Sometimes they are just need a power cycle or a reboot, “he said.

But the hardware fix it’s not always that simple.

“It could be that the fan on the individual machine that is used for the cooling is broken, or maybe it is the power supply that needs to be repaired or replaced, “explained Heller.

“It could be the hashboards themselves,” Heller continued. “Each hashboard has a lot of individual chips, and those are the chips that do the calculations. I think with to Bitmain machine, Self more of four chips on a single hashboard is broken, the whole hashboard will switch off. Like this instead of hashing at about 100%, you’re just hashing at two thirds or one-Third.”

Seasonal changes in the weather add a whole other layer of complexity.

Chief engineer Nick Sears repairs hardware at SCATE Ventures Inc.’s mining farm. in Dallesport, Washington.

SCATE Ventures Inc.

Storms can lead to power interruptions or other interruptions. Heller says That in summer, the machines candies also overheating, especially on farms that have switched to using more powerful unit over the course of the last two years.

SCATE is mine in Washington seems to have found a way around this problem from using its own immersion cooling technology, which involves immersion bitcoin miners in a non-conductive fluid to be dissipated heatrather than rely on on fans.

Training up and get paid

Sears might not need a diploma to mine, but taking online training courses run by Chinese engineers who work for Bitmain is long gone way to help him repair specialized mines equipment.

Last month, Sears and another employee completed a virtual class via Bitmain to learn how to work on the ASIC chips on hashboard, as well as the power supplies of the S17, one of The most popular machines now accustomed to mint bitcoin.

“I have a certification of maintenance repair, so lately I have just I have perfected mine skills in that category, “explained Sears.” Certifies my knowledge and gives me access to buy supplies e material directly via Bitmain. “

Chief Engineer Nick Sears at SCATE Ventures Inc. in Dallesport, Washington.

SCATE Ventures Inc.

Subsequently, he hopes to participate in a in-class person in Atlanta, Georgia, to learn more on welding. “The hard part is learning how solder and disassemble a circuit board”said Sears.

Sears’ boss, Scott Bennett, is big on giving his team access to the resources that need to improve in their work.

Bennett, CEO of SCATE Ventures, is a self-taught miner who started his business in his parents’ box auto back in 2017, just before last crypto “winter” when prices of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies plummeted. Similar to Sears, Bennett once lived in one of its data centers – only he opted for a on- camper site, rather than a room within the facility itself.

It helped that he lives in few minutes of some of the cheapest power in the world.

“All of our facilities are 100% hydroelectric, ”said Bennett.

The mining facility in where Sears works is next to the Columbia River e directly adjacent to the Dalles dam. “We love that source of power. It is cheap, renewable and very abundant, “he said.

How for employee pay, Sears says earning $ 54,000 a year, more full health insurance, which is paid for for from society.

Bennett also runs some extraction machines exclusively for its employees. This equates to about 0.02 BTC quarterly, which by today price equates to $ 788 bonus every three months at Sears.

“With all the miners in China goes offline, on difficulty rate is changing, so the rewards I’m higher”Sears said.” The … last time we got some more compared to the previous time, which is great for me. “

The SCATE Ventures mining farm runs on hydroelectric power generated by the Dalles dam.

SCATE Ventures Inc.

Remote extraction

is also possible become a cryptocurrency miner without physically managing any mining equipment at all.

Adam Gitzes has made up his mind in at the beginning of 2021 that he really wanted to my for bitcoin. After his wife vetoed the idea of installation equipment in they home, he began to look for alternatives.

Gitzes discovered Compass Mining, which allows customers a buy extraction machines for between $ 5,800 and $ 11,700, so locate them in data center partners and cares of physical logistics.

“I bought the machines on the website, Compass handled the logistics, delivering the machines to three different data centers in North America, “said Gitzes, who he explained that he spent 1.1 bitcoin – around $ 60,000 at the time of purchase – on they.

“Compass also configured them way that I asked. “

So a typical day in the life of a miner like Gitze consists of awakening up and checking online to see how Very bitcoin his machines extracted overnight ea ensure that nobody of its units are down.

Inside the SCATE Ventures mining farm in Dallesport, Washington.

SCATE Ventures Inc.

Gitze owns six machines than him says I’m on the “higher end. “When China expelled all its miners, Gitzes says doubled amount of money That his machines generate daily.

After paying for the mining pool fee of 1.25%, Gitze miners generate around .0055 bitcoin per day, or $ 216 at today’s prices. Daily electricity costs are around $ 30, so it’s pulling in about $ 186 per day, or just shy of $ 5,700 every month. To that rate, will recover its investment in about 11 months, without major fluctuations in energy or bitcoin prices.

Gitzes was so impressed with the Compass business model who quit his job in Amazon for join the team in March. “The mission decentralize mining and do in so that everyone can participate is something that I find really important, “said Gitzes.

The SCATE Ventures mining farm is in Dallesport, Washington.

SCATE Ventures Inc.

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