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Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers
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Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers

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Containment solutions can eliminate hot spots and provide energy savings over traditional uncontained data center designs. The best containment solution for an existing facility will depend on the …

Containment solutions can eliminate hot spots and provide energy savings over traditional uncontained data center designs. The best containment solution for an existing facility will depend on the constraints of the facility. While ducted hot aisle containment is preferred for highest efficiency, cold aisle containment tends to be easier and more cost effective for facilities with existing raised floor air distribution. This presentation investigates the constraints, reviews all available containment methods, and provides recommendations for determining the best containment approach.

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  • 1. Implementing Hot and Cold Air Containment in Existing Data Centers Schneider Electric Data Center Science Center White Paper 153 Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 2. Containment solutions can eliminate hot spots and provide energy savings over traditional uncontained data center designs. The best containment solution for an existing facility will depend on the constraints of the facility. While ducted hot aisle containment is preferred for highest efficiency, cold aisle containment tends to be easier and more cost effective for facilities with existing raised floor air distribution. This paper investigates the constraints, reviews all available containment methods, and provides recommendations for determining the best containment approach. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 3. Introduction Improve predictability and efficiency Containment benefits include increased • Reliability • Rack power density • Cooling capacity • Cooling system energy savings Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 4. Containment Methods Hot Air and Cold Air Containment methods Contain hot air Contain cold air Ducted rack Ducted hot aisle containment Row-cooled hot aisle containment Rack air containment Cold aisle containment Row-cooled cold aisle containment See White Paper 55, “The Different Types of Air Distribution for IT Environments”, for more information. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 5. Assess the Facility Essential to choosing the right containment solution • Assessment should be done in advance • Note constraints • Constraints – obstacles that cannot be overcome or only changed at great expense or with unacceptable consequences • Determine cost or consequence of constraints • Constraints include • Facility limitations •• Regulatory limitations • Unchangeable business requirements Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 6. Assess the Facility -- Constraints IT equipment arrangement • Lack of hot/cold aisle arrangement limits choice of containment solution • Proper aisle widths also essential for aisle containment deployment Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 7. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Ceiling height • Need room to install drop ceiling • Used as air return plenum • Essential for ducted hot aisle containment or ducted rack solutions Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 8. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Raised floor plenum depth • Insufficient depth will not provide sufficient cooling air volume to higher density racks • Due to • Poor design • Resistance caused by cabling, conduit, and piping • Limits ability to adopt cold aisle containment solution Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 9. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Column location •• Two main locations • Within row of racks • Aligning with rack aisle • May cause interference between columns and aisle containment panels Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 10. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Cabling • Overhead cabling can interfere with ducted containment panels • May eliminate ducted hot aisle containment or ducted rack solutions • Cabling routed across aisle in single location may allow ducted solutions Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 11. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Air distribution type • Critical to determining investment level and complexity of containment method • Easy and cost effective to deploy • hot air containment for data centers with targeted return and flooded supply •• cold air containment for data centers with targeted supply and flooded return. Targeted return and flooded supply Targeted supply and flooded return Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 12. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Considerations for lighting • Creating containment space can cause poor lighting • Transparent or translucent ceilings only partially effective • Panels can get dirty Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 13. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Considerations for fire detection and suppression system • Air containment directs high air volume at IT equipment and back to cooling units • Can dilute smoke • Makes detection and suppression more difficult • Detector affected by local airflow patterns, smoke dilution •• Suppression agent dispersion affected by airflow volume, obstructions Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 14. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Considerations for a cooling outage • Air containment solutions influence ride through time during cooling outage See White Paper 179, “Data Center Temperature Rise During a Cooling System Outage”, for more information. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 15. Assess the Facility -- Constraints Considerations for working conditions around IT equipment • Containing cold air makes rest of room same temperature as hot aisle • Can become uncomfortable for personnel in data center •• IT equipment on data center perimeter may be negatively affected •• May also violate OSHA regulations or ISO 7243 guidelines for exceeding wet-bulb globe temperature Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 16. Review All Potential Solutions Likely solutions All solutions • Allow for higher rack power densities • Allow for increased cooling system energy savings • Eliminate hot spots • Increase cooling unit capacity • Hot and cold air containment types should never be mixed • Lowers cooling system efficiency Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 17. Review All Potential Solutions Cold aisle containment system (CACS) Raised floor cooling distribution system • Encloses cold aisle, making rest of room large hot-air return plenum • Recommended when • Racks and IT equipment are in a hot aisle/cold aisle arrangement • Data center uses a raised floor and flooded return air distribution method • There are no stand-alone IT devices on the data center perimeter • High density racks can’t draw or pull enough cool air from the raised floor • Containment project must be completed quickly See White Paper 135, “Impact of Hot and Cold Aisle Containment on Data Center Temperature and Efficiency”, for more information. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 18. Review All Potential Solutions Ducted hot aisle containment system (Ducted HACS) Used with either raised floor- or hard floor-based air distribution system • Encloses hot aisle, allowing rest of data center to become a large cold-air plenum • Recommended when • Racks and IT equipment are in a hot/cold aisle arrangement • There is a drop ceiling hot air return plenum • There are stand-alone IT devices on data center perimeter • Data center is frequently occupied by personnel • Will not create a hot working environment in the uncontained area) See White Paper 182, “The Use of Ducted Air Containment Systems in Data Centers ”, for more information. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 19. Review All Potential Solutions Ducted rack Best in environments with scattered high density racks with front-to-back airflow pattern • Duct mounted to back of rack contains hot exhaust air and ducts it into drop ceiling • Recommended when • Data center has a drop ceiling, air return plenum •• Data center has scattered high density racks • Rack rows have unequal length • Rack uses front-to-back airflow pattern • No hot aisle/cold aisle arrangement and it’s impractical to migrate to it • Data center is frequently occupied by personnel • Building columns interfere and prevent aisle containment solutions See White Paper 182, “The Use of Ducted Air Containment Systems in Data Centers ”, for more information. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 20. Review All Potential Solutions Row-cooled hot aisle containment system (Row-cooled HACS) Best in data centers with existing row-based cooling units; also for data centers with perimeter cooling unit • With existing in-row cooling units, containment by adding ceiling panels over aisle • With existing perimeter cooling, cooling units added between racks • Recommended when • Data center has a drop ceiling, air return plenum • In-row cooling units already deployed • Racks and IT equipment in hot aisle/cold aisle arrangement • Cold aisle containment and ducted hot aisle containment are poor choices • Higher density racks are being added to existing lower density data center • Where floor space must be conserved • Data center is frequently occupied by personnel • Containment project must be completed quickly See White Paper 134, “Deploying High-Density Pods in a Low-Density Data Center”, for more information. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 21. Review All Potential Solutions Rack air containment system (RACS) Best in data centers with very high-density racks • Integrates rack-based cooling units with racks to keep air circulation within containment Single rack Multiple racks See White Paper 130, “Choosing Between Room, Row, and Rack-based Cooling for Data Centers”, for more information. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 22. Review All Potential Solutions Rack air containment system (RACS) – cont. Recommended when • Data center has a drop ceiling, air return plenum • There are scattered high density racks, or sound attenuation is required • Complete isolation is required, such as stand-alone open data center environments, or mixed layouts, or to prevent exposure to hot aisles. • Wiring closets lack any form of cooling, exposing high density equipment to high temperatures Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 23. Review All Potential Solutions Row-cooled, cold aisle containment system ( Row-cooled CACS) ) Best in data centers with perimeter cooling units, and all racks are in some form of cold aisle containment • Encloses cold aisle; containment system deployed as a pod • Recommended when • Racks and IT equipment are in a hot/cold aisle arrangement • All IT racks can be configured with some form of cold aisle containment to avoid exhaust hot air to the fronts of uncontained racks • Raised floor cooling has reached maximum airflow capacity due to height and/or congestion • More perimeter cooling units cannot be added to increase cooling capacity • Containment project must be completed quickly See White Paper 137, “Energy Efficient Cooling for Data Centers: A Close-Coupled Row Solution”, for more information. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 24. Comparison of Air Containment Methods Containment method Pros Cons Cold air containment Cold aisle containment system Easy and cost effective for raised floor applications; cooling capacity can be shared with other racks within two rows; fastest deployment time of all containment types Lower number of free cooling hours; creates uncomfortable working environment in uncontained areas Row-cooled In-cooled, cold coolingcapacity existingCACS aisle containment system row cooling units increase cooling capacity of existing CACS environment with perimeter cooling units; prepackaged solution can save deployment time Higher first capital cost; need to move IT racks to insert row-based cooling units within row Hot air containment Ducted rack Easy to deploy for scattered HD racks; Don’t require a hot aisle / cold aisle arrangement; can be deployed piece by piece to reduce upfront capital cost; offers higher number of free cooling hours May cause pressure imbalance inside of drop ceiling or between nearby racks; increased labor time; longer deployment time for each rack Ducted, hot aisle containment system Creates comfortable work environment in uncontained areas; cooling capacity can be shared with other racks within two rows; offers higher number of free cooling hours High temperature in the hot aisle may create uncomfortable work environment in contained area, longer deployment time for each rack Row-cooled, hot aisle containment system Low-cost option for data centers with existing row-based cooling. Thermally neutral to the existing room-based cooling system; cooling capacity can be shared with other racks within two rows; prepackaged solution can save deployment time In data centers with existing perimeter cooling units: Higher upfront capital cost; need to move IT racks to insert row-based cooling units within row. High temperature in hot aisle may create uncomfortable work environment in contained area Rack air containment system Almost immune to the constraints of existing facility; easy to plan for any power density; isolated from the existing cooling system; attenuates noise In data centers with existing perimeter cooling units, has the highest first cost because more Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014 cooling units are needed; cooling capacity can’t be shared with other racks; containment will add the depth of rack which will consume more floor space
  • 25. Select Containment Methods Based on physical constraints • Acceptable to implement both types of cold air containment or multiple types of hot air containment • Hot and cold air containment types should never be mixed • Leads to lower cooling system efficiency Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 26. Select Containment Methods Select containment according to common air distribution methods. X means not recommended or impractical Air distribution method Type 1 Type 2 (perimeter cooling units) Type 2 (row-based cooling units) Cold air containment deployment is required x Cold aisle containment system Preferred Selected when fast Row-cooled cold Used when additional Used when additional aisle containment capacity is unattainable from capacity is unattainable from existing perimeter cooling existing perimeter cooling system x units or raised floor limitations units or raised floor limitations Ducted rack x Only recommended for scattered high density racks x Ducted hot aisle x Preferred x Hot air containment containment system Row-cooled hot aisle containment system x Used when additional capacity is unattainable from existing perimeter cooling units or raised floor limitations Preferred Rack air containment system Only recommended for scattered high density racks or to contain a single rack row Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 27. Select Containment Methods Select containment according to less common air distribution methods. X means not recommended or impractical Air distribution method Type 3 Type 4 Type 5 Type 6 r ent Cold aisle containment x x x Preferred Cold air containme system Row-cooled cold aisle containment system x x x Used when additional capacity is unattainable from existing perimeter cooling units ment Ducted rack x x Only recommended for scattered high density racks x Ducted hot aisle containment x x Preferred x ot air containm system Row-cooled hot aisle containment Selected when new high density racks need to be added in a traditional low density Selected when new high density racks need to be added in a traditional low density Used when additional capacity is unattainable from existing perimeter cooling nits x Ho system Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014 y data center y data center units Rack air containment system Only recommended for scattered high density racks or to contain a single rack row
  • 28. Selecting Containment Hardware Considerations when deploying • Customized containment solutions may be required if different kinds of IT racks exist • Look for FLEXIBILITY, containment solutions that • Adapt to varying aisle widths, rack heights and depths to support either hot or cold aisle containment, or single rows • Easy over aisle access means individual panels can be removed, providing above-aisle access for cabling and maintenance Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 29. Selecting Containment Hardware Considerations when deploying • For aisle containment or ducted rack, additional lighting fixture may be required • Look for LIGHTING, containment solutions that • Specify overhead panels that transmit up to 90% of light • Use high efficiency LED lighting with on/off motion sensors Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 30. Selecting Containment Hardware Considerations when deploying • Fire suppression may be required by authority having jurisdiction (AHJ) inside of the aisle containment • Look for FIRE SUPPRESSION, containment solutions that • Alert personnel • Drop ceiling panels based on temperature or smoke detectors • Emergency break-away sliding doors to exit aisle quickly in an emergency Normal Detect the fire Drop the ceiling Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 31. Ongoing Air Management Maintenance Monitor airflow patterns and temperature • For cold aisle containment • Control air flow based on pressure differential of aisle • Monitor non-rack IT equipment in the uncontained area to insure adequate cool supply air • For ducted hot aisle containment • Mitigate high temperature in hot aisle by temporarily opening aisle doors to let in cooler air Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 32. Conclusion ● Two containment methods – hot air and cold air ● Cold aisle containment and ducted hot aisle containment -- two most common solutions for data centers with existing perimeter cooling units ● Cold aisle containment preferred for facilities with raised floor as a supply air plenum ● Ducted hot aisle containment preferred for facilities with drop ceiling as the hot air return plenum ● Row-cooled hot aisle containment is preferred for data centers with existing row-based cooling units These conclusions are for existing data centers. For new data centers, please see White Paper 135, “Impact of Hot and Cold Aisle Containment on Data Center Temperature and Efficiency”. Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014
  • 33. Resources Impact of Hot and Cold Aisle Containment on Data Center Temperature and Efficiency White Paper 135 The Different Types of Air Distribution for IT Environments White Paper 55 Data Center Temperature Rise During a Cooling System Outage White Paper 179 Energy Efficient Cooling for Data Centers: A Close-Coupled Row Solution White Paper 137 The Use of Ducted Air Containment in Data Centers White Paper 182 Choosing Between Room Room, Row Row, and Rack Rack-based Cooling for Data Centers White Paper 130 p Deploying High-Density Pods in a Low-Density Data Center White Paper 134 Browse all APC white papers whitepapers.apc.com Browse all APC TradeOff Tools™ tools.apc.com Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center WP 153 Presentation – July 2014

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