7 best practices for data center thermal and airflow management

Jan. 30, 2017
The way data centers utilize their resources will undoubtedly continue to change as new technologies emerge. Further, as more devices become integrated with the Internet of Things (IoT), downtime will not be an option.

As technologies surrounding cloud computing and infrastructure convergence continue to evolve, data center managers need to re-shape their strategies to allow for greater capacity to ensure that user demands for high quality uninterrupted service are met. The key to this realignment is embracing the latest thermal efficiency, airflow, power and environmental monitoring strategies.

To that end, data center managers should work to identify where their resources are currently allocated and how they can best be optimized. With this in mind, Chatsworth Products, Inc. (CPI) has outlined the following seven best practices for addressing these demands and achieving data center optimization:

1.Address airflow managementThe most critical step is separation of hot and cold air within the server room. There are three basic solutions: cabinets with vertical exhaust ducts, hot aisle containment and cold aisle containment.

2.Remove barriers to increase power/heat densities Isolation can be achieved by using accessories such as blanking filler panels, air dams and brush seal grommets.

3.Track rack conditions and environmental variables It is important to work with solutions that can provide the ability to look into the thermal and environmental performance of the infrastructure.

4. Monitor powerIntelligent power distribution units (PDUs) with monitoring capabilities enable the monitoring of voltage, current, power (kW) and energy (kilowatt-hour) levels.

5. Monitor cooling Track inlet temperatures against the latest ASHRAE guidelines and evolving equipment specifications.

6. Monitor uptime and status reportsCheck individual system uptime reports and keep an eye on the status of various system regularly.

7. Budget for new airflow and HVAC optimization systems With a ducted exhaust system, every bit of cold air produced by the HVAC system has to go through a server, so there is no waste.

CPI notes that it provides the data center infrastructure necessary to support these best practices.

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