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Server Room Air Conditioner

Server Room Air Conditioner

Server Room Air Conditioner

The need for compact server room increases the demand for smart and efficient server room air conditioner. The server’s density in a compact room requires constant cooling to avoid overheating of the data centre hardware. This article discusses air conditioner solutions in compact server rooms.

Selecting the right server room air conditioner

This paper provides basic guidance for selecting the right air conditioner and cooling methodology for multiple types of server room projects, as well as varying densities of new servers. We focus on proven cooling technologies you can use right now, rather than emerging technologies. Server room provisioning is a multidimensional problem with a variety of constraints. Those constraints drive the choices, and choices need to be compared based upon a thorough analysis of each option’s total cost of ownership (TCO). This article describes different types of server room air conditioner solutions where each is best applied.

Business Challenge Air Conditioning

Increasing compute capabilities in server room has resulted in corresponding increases in rack and room power densities. How to cool and air conditioning these new higher-powered racks is a question that challenges all server rooms managers. In the past it was sufficient to roll in new servers and just add server room air conditioners (CRAC units) around the perimeter. Not a lot of engineering was required. When server rooms and data centres were in the range of 75-100 watts per square foot (nominally square foot of total raised floor area), this method generally worked fine and the energy costs (and losses from inefficiencies) were small enough that they did not receive much attention. However, today’s IT equipment can push server rooms to 750 watts per square foot and the server room air conditioner challenges and costs are much more obvious. It is no wonder that at a 2007 Data Centre Users Group meeting sponsored by Liebert (a provider of power and cooling technologies), the 107 participants listed as their top three facility/network concerns: heat density (cooling), power density, and energy efficiency (energy costs and equipment efficiency).

Server Room Technical Challenge

Server room air conditioning and cooling is primarily a thermodynamics problem. There is a heat source (the server) and a heat sinks (typically the outdoor environment). Naturally, there are other components in a server room responsible for heat as well, but for simplicity’s sake in this section of the paper we will focus on the server.

Depending on the air conditioner status, temperatures and proximities of both the heat source and the heat sink, the movement of heat energy from the server to the outdoors will have a range of efficiency, particularly in how much additional energy is needed to accomplish adequate transfer. It is important to consider these additional energy uses in the overall system. The first is the energy involved in moving the fluid (air, water, or liquid) to carry the heat between the source and the sink. This is typically a fan or pump or both. It is important to understand that there may be multiple stages of fluid movement and that the energy use can be significant.

Cooling and Air Conditioning Solutions

We will now consider different types of cooling as solutions to the heat density question. We begin with definitions of air and liquid cooling, followed by discussions of their advantages and capabilities. We close by discussing how each would fit into

Three different scenarios:

1) Addition to a legacy server rooms;

2) Expansion into an existing non-data center space; and

3) The design and construction of a new server room from the ground up (frequently referred to as “greenfield” deployment). This must figure into any analysis of their use. They do have the benefit of being rack-independent. In other words, their use is not tied to a particular server or rack manufacturer.

Another potential downside of these solutions is the risk of fluids close to the IT equipment. The fluid may evaporate or be inert, but in all cases the risk of leaks creates a potential problem that must be weighed within the overall decision process. Choosing one of these solutions often carries with it the cost penalty of a leak detection system.

Presented by UK DCC – UK Data Centre Cleaning Services

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