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SPECIAL SECTION PAPERS

Impact of Tile Design on the Thermal Performance of Open and Enclosed Aisles

[+] Author and Article Information
Sadegh Khalili, Mohammad I. Tradat, Bahgat Sammakia

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
ES2 Center,
Binghamton University-SUNY,
Binghamton, NY 13902

Kourosh Nemati

Future Facilities Inc.,
San Jose, CA 95110

Mark Seymour

Future Facilities Ltd.,
London SE1 7HX, UK

Contributed by the Electronic and Photonic Packaging Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ELECTRONIC PACKAGING. Manuscript received October 13, 2017; final manuscript received November 28, 2017; published online March 2, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Reza Khiabani.

J. Electron. Packag 140(1), 010907 (Mar 02, 2018) (12 pages) Paper No: EP-17-1109; doi: 10.1115/1.4039028 History: Received October 13, 2017; Revised November 28, 2017

In raised floor data centers, tiles with high open area ratio or complex understructure are used to fulfill the demand of today's high-density computing. Using more open tiles reduces the pressure drop across the raised floor with the potential advantages of increased airflow and lower noise. However, it introduces the disadvantage of increased nonuniformity of airflow distribution. In addition, there are various tile designs available on the market with different opening shapes or understructures. Furthermore, a physical separation of cold and hot aisles (containment) has been introduced to minimize the mixing of cold and hot air. In this study, three types of floor tiles with different open area, opening geometry, and understructure are considered. Experimentally validated detail models of tiles were implemented in computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations to address the impact of tile design on the cooling of information technology (IT) equipment in both open and enclosed aisle configurations. Also, impacts of under-cabinet leakage on the IT equipment inlet temperature in the provisioned and under-provisioned scenarios are studied. In addition, a predictive equation for the critical under-provisioning point that can lead to a no-flow condition in IT equipment with weaker airflow systems is presented. Finally, the impact of tile design on thermal performance in a partially enclosed aisle with entrance doors is studied and discussed.

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References

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Figures

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Fig. 4

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type A installed in the open aisle system, with UCL

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Fig. 5

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type B installed in the open aisle system, with UCL

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Fig. 6

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type C installed in the open aisle system, with UCL

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Fig. 3

Computational fluid dynamics simulation: (a) three-dimensional map of the data center cell, (b) the layout of the data center cell, (c) the numbering system of the IT equipment, (d) operational flow curve at maximum fan speed, and (e) grid size for tile C

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Fig. 2

(a) Numerical results with an available compact CFD model for slotted tiles with the same open area as tile A and (b) numerical results with a GR model of tile A (experimental flow visualization data is from [18])

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Fig. 13

Averaged IATs of IT equipment at the same elevation, in under-provisioned aisle

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Fig. 1

Tiles under investigation

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Fig. 7

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type A installed in the open aisle system, without UCL

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Fig. 8

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type B installed in the open aisle system, without UCL

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Fig. 9

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type C installed in the open aisle system, without UCL

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Fig. 10

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type A installed in the CAC system, with UCL

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Fig. 11

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type B installed in the CAC system, with UCL

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Fig. 12

Air temperature at the inlet of servers with tiles of type C installed in the CAC system, with UCL

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Fig. 17

Averaged IATs of servers at the same elevation in racks 1 to 6, without UCL

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Fig. 22

Pressure contour at the racks' face when tiles of type A are installed, case 4 (fully sealed CAC)

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Fig. 18

Inlet air temperatures of servers in rack 1, without UCL

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Fig. 19

Circulation inside the cold aisle (tile B installed). Note that some of the servers are receiving partially recirculated warm air from the room.

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Fig. 14

UCL is supplied to the lower servers when tile B is installed: (a) CFD simulation and (b) experimental visualization

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Fig. 15

Under-cabinet leakage (UCL) for cases 1 and 3

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Fig. 16

Averaged IATs of servers at the same elevation in racks 1 to 6, with UCL

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Fig. 20

Averaged IATs of servers in racks 1 to 6 at the same elevation, without UCL

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Fig. 23

Pressure contour at the racks' face when tiles of type B are installed, case 4 (fully sealed CAC)

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Fig. 21

Grill flow rates in case 7

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