Data Centers and Server Rooms of All Sizes Require a
Special Kind of Cooling.
Rooms that are maintained for the comfort of people are heated and cooled very differently than rooms where the environment is maintained for the health of computer equipment.
A major piece of comfort cooling lies in the dehumidifying of the air. Humidity is introduced from outside air as a result of things like door traffic, building leakage, respiration and sweating, cooking, coffee pots, etc. In a commercial building it is normal to continually introduce some outside air to help maintain indoor air quality. The outside air can be a major source of humidity dependent upon season and geographical location.
Special Needs for Your Electronic Equipment
Maintaining a higher level of humidity in areas like computer rooms and data centers can help to reduce the chances of electrostatic discharge, which can damage sensitive electronic equipment. The goal is not to maintain a comfort level for human inhabitation, rather it is to maintain a proper atmosphere for the equipment.
Servers and other electronics that require cooling are commonly in a room within an already conditioned building. The problem is that the building is conditioned for people and not the equipment. Typically these rooms have little introduction of variables from people, the heat gain is from the equipment itself. It is important to note that the equipment runs at a relatively constant level, and runs continuously. As a result, properly sized precision cooling for this type of space needs to run continuously at near its maximum capacity. Some extra capacity will be built into the system to allow for expansion, building temperature variations, etc.
The heat load in the server room is present year round. Part of the air conditioning unit for the room is located outside the building and must be designed to run in outdoor temperatures as low as -30 degrees Fahrenheit. A standard AC unit would not survive an attempt to run it in extreme cold.
Because of their compact size and relatively low cost, ductless mini-split air conditioners are often used for small server rooms. Mini-splits, like any other conventional air conditioner, are not designed for the type of cooling needed in server rooms. They will not perform as well and will have a shorter life.
Precision cooling and maintaining the proper environment for your electronic equipment is vital. Often when planning a new computer room or data center, little or no thought is given to how the layout of the room will effect cooling and environment. We can help you determine the most beneficial layout that will help keep your facility properly cooled.
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