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Dust and Airborne Contaminants Cleaning in Data Centre and Server Room

If not kept under control, airborne contaminants in data centres and server rooms cause a variety of problems from impaired power efficiency to equipment failure. Because modern circuit boards and computer chips get smaller and smaller, contaminants more easily cause head crashes and contact intermittence.

The computer room data centre, like a living organism, is capable of responding to excessive dust air pollution. Various microparticles, heat sources and electrostatic charges lead to disruptions in the data centre, as well as fires and pollution in the server room. Depending on the industry, special requirements to clean indoor air, ie concentration of microparticles used in the production areas should not exceed the prescribed limits. Consequently, there is a division into classes of air cleanliness in accordance with the terms of technological processes, committed in these cleanroom.


Ferrous metal particles

Ferrous metal particles come from printers, tape drives, worn parts in HVAC units new floor tiles, conduit pipes and various mechanical parts. Because these metal particles are conductive, they can cause electrical damage to circuits boards, resulting in downtime.

Concrete dust

Unsealed concrete releases fine dust into the air that consists of calcium, silica and other by-products that are abrasive and corrosive. Even when concrete is sealed, these seals can break down over time and should be inspected regularly.

Corrosive gases

Gaseous contaminants such as sulfur dioxide, hydrogen sulfide, nitrogen dioxide, chlorine, ozone and others cause copper and silver corrosion. Over time, these contaminants cause corrosion of delicate metal parts and wiring in modern circuit boards and chips.

Zinc and tin whiskers

Yes, whiskers. Whiskers are small metal filaments that grow from electroplated steel floor plates, bars in the ceiling and other metal components. Because tin and zinc are efficient conductors of electricity, these filaments can cause shorts when they break off, circulate in the air and come in contact with circuits.

Chlorides / salts

Anyone who has been to the beach knows how quickly the salty air can cause corrosion on vehicles and other metal objects. Data centres and server rooms that are located in coastal areas must be careful of airborne salinity levels.

Electrostatic dust

Hazardous dust as well as dust and lint particles from clothing, cardboard, paper and other seemingly benign particles can become static-charged and interfere with servers causing data loss, erroneous commands, resets and other issues.

How does the cleaning prevents downtime in the data centres environment?

Data centre refers to the cleanroom class ISO 8 and to maintain the necessary level, it is necessary to carry out cleaning work on the part of the service level manual. In accordance with the requirements of the ISO cleanliness class 8 dust in the air in the engine rooms shall not exceed 0.75 mg / m 3 at a particle size of not more than 3 mm. Excessive pollution of microparticles leads to failure of the servers equipment. Dust-laden air passes through the server, leaves chips dust particles, which are the cause of electrical breakdowns that could damage the server hardware. These breakdowns are caused by dust accumulating property of static electricity up to 5000 V. In periodic such clearance servers by vacuum cleaning and purging antistatic equipment reduces the risk of breakdowns. Also, due to air purge restores the natural functioning of the data centre after the construction and repair work, carrying not only pollution but also are the cause of leakage of data centres.

In many server rooms, cable trays contaminated debris since the time of the construction of the data centres. It remains in building material, pieces of packaging equipment, dirt from shoes, outdoor trash are the main sources of pollution server rooms. Regular cleaning of the data centre helps reduce the frequency of repair of engineering equipment and reduces the operating costs for its maintenance.

On the cover of raised floor, data centre permanently accumulate dirt, which appears as a result of operating the data centre, and improper care of the floor tile. Lack of regular cleaning of the surface of the plates reduces the conductivity of antistatic coating several times.

To one of the most important milestones during spring cleaning data centre refers space under the raised floor. The subfloor is a critical area in the data centre room from the point of view of the generation and accumulation of dirt, and it is necessary to pay attention in the first place. Looking under the raised floor in the data centres, you can immediately see what the situation is with the level of cleanliness of the environment in its host. Often the dirt beneath the surface of the raised floor is kept from the time of commissioning of the data centres, and later still only increase, getting there through the cracks and crevices that occur over time in the course of operation. Clear space under the raised floor cooling system allows air to work as efficiently as possible. If the server is not cleaned in a timely manner, the filters of air conditioners are gradually beginning to clog, which subsequently can lead to failure of engineering or computing equipment.

To determine the level of contamination of its data centres is recommended to perform a visual inspection of the territory of the server room to determine possible sources of contamination and perform instrumental measurements of the concentration of particles in the air. Also necessary to test the air purge multiple servers to determine the extent of internal space dust equipment. Based on the survey results the decision for the general cleaning of the entire territory of the data centre, including the internal volume of the server hardware, and identify measures for the periodic maintenance of the required level of cleanliness.

Cleaning, by own unprofessional staff, can lead to costly downtime in server rooms. When you contact a company that specializes in serving the data centre, the only item of expenditure for cleaning will be charge of cleaning services that includes the rental of equipment and personnel costs. In this case, you do not need to spend money on training own staff, high-tech cleaning equipment, special clothing and detergents.

Specialists cleaning company will determine the level of contamination of the data centre and the list of required services for general cleaning, as well as help to make the rules of service, in which the frequency and scope of work are determined by taking into account the specific features of the data centre and the client’s wishes.

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