Research Papers

Investigation of the Mechanism of Temperature Rise in a Data Center With Cold Aisle Containment

[+] Author and Article Information
Mingrui Zhang

Key Laboratory of Efficient Utilization
of Low and Medium Grade Energy,
Tianjin University,
Tianjin 300072, China

Zhengwei Long, Hao Zhang, Xionglei Cheng

School of Environmental Science
and Engineering,
Tianjin University,
Tianjin 300072, China

Qingsong An

Key Laboratory of Efficient Utilization
of Low and Medium Grade Energy,
Tianjin University,
Tianjin 300072, China
e-mail: anqingsong@tju.edu.cn

Chao Sun

School of Computer Science and Technology,
Tianjin University,
Tianjin 300072, China

Xiaowei Li

China Ship Development and Design Center,
Wuhan 430064, China

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Electronic and Photonic Packaging Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ELECTRONIC PACKAGING. Manuscript received July 15, 2018; final manuscript received February 19, 2019; published online May 8, 2019. Assoc. Editor: Baris Dogruoz.

J. Electron. Packag 141(4), 041002 (May 08, 2019) (8 pages) Paper No: EP-18-1059; doi: 10.1115/1.4043157 History: Received July 15, 2018; Revised February 19, 2019

This paper theoretically investigates the relationships among factors that affect the temperature rise of server racks and experimentally tests the influence of variable space contained arrangements on the thermal performance. To express the flow and heat transfer process of cold air in servers and analyze the critical factors affecting the temperature rise, a simplified mathematical model representing servers is developed using experimental results. An experiment is conducted within a modular data center in which cold air is supplied from a raised floor. The experiment employed a variable space of cold aisle containment and measured the resulting temperature rise, as well as pressure difference of racks and other parameters, in the simplified mathematical model. By comparing the experimental results and theoretical calculation, the theoretical model is proved to be reasonable and valid. The model predicts that the critical factors affecting the temperature rise of racks consist of static and dynamic pressure difference, total pressure of the fans, geometric structure, power consumption, resistance of doors, and opening area of servers. The result shows that the factor affected by the cold aisle contained system is the static pressure, while for the dynamic pressure difference, the contained architecture has a slight positive effect. Although the average temperature rise is quite decreased in the contained system, the static pressure distribution is nonuniform. A half-contained system which reduced contained space ratio to 50% is measured to cause a 22% increase of the static pressure difference, making a more uniform temperature distribution.

Copyright © 2019 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.


Van Heddeghem, W. , Lambert, S. , Lannoo, B. , Colle, D. , Pickavet, M. , and Demeester, P. , 2014, “ Trends in Worldwide ICT Electricity Consumption From 2007 to 2012,” Comput. Commun., 50(l), pp. 64–76. [CrossRef]
Matt, S. , and Julian, K. , 2013, “ Uptime Institute 2012 Data Center Industry Survey,” Uptime Institute, New York.
Axiter, 2014, Thermal Efficiency Best Practices, DCD Intelligence, Glenview, IL.
Emerson Network Power, 2009, “ Energy Logic: Reducing Data Center Energy Consumption by Creating Savings That Cascade Across Systems,” White Paper, Emerson Network Power, Vertiv Co., Columbus, OH, Technical Report.
Cho, J. , Yang, J. , and Park, W. , 2014, “ Evaluation of Air Distribution System's Airflow Performance for Cooling Energy Savings in High-Density Data Centers,” Energy Build., 68(8i), pp. 270–279. [CrossRef]
Alkharabsheh, S. , Fernandes, J. , Gebrehiwot, B. , Agonafer, D. , Ghose, K. , Ortega, A. , Joshi, Y. , and Sammakia, B. , 2015, “ A Brief Overview of Recent Developments in Thermal Management in Data Centers,” ASME J. Electron. Packag., 137(4), p. 040801. [CrossRef]
Tsuda, A. , Mino, Y. , and Nishimura, S. , 2017, “ Comparison of ICT Equipment Air-Intake Temperatures Between Cold Aisle Containment and Hot Aisle Containment in Datacenters,” International Telecommunications Energy Conference-INTELEC, Gold Coast, Australia, Oct. 22–26, pp. 59–65.
Jinkyun, C. , Taesub, L. , and Byungseon, S. K. , 2009, “ Measurements and Predictions of the Air Distribution Systems in High Compute Density (Internet) Data Centers,” Energy Build., 41(10), pp. 1107–1115. [CrossRef]
Gondipalli, S. , Sammakia, B. , Bhopte, S. , Schmidt, R. , Iyengar, M. K. , and Murray, B. , 2009, “ Optimization of Cold Aisle Isolation Designs for a Data Center With Roofs and Doors Using Slits,” ASME Paper No. InterPACK2009-89203.
Arghode, V. K. , Sundaralingam, V. , Joshi, Y. , and Phelps, W. , 2013, “ Thermal Characteristics of Open and Contained Data Center Cold Aisle,” ASME J. Heat Transfer, 135(6), p. 061901. [CrossRef]
Schmidt, R. , Vallury, A. , and Iyengar, M. , 2011, “ Energy Savings Through Hot and Cold Aisle Containment Configurations for Air Cooled Servers in Data Centers,” ASME Paper No. IPACK2011-52206.
Ham, S.-W. , and Jeong, J.-W. , 2016, “ Impact of Aisle Containment on Energy Performance of a Data Center When Using an Integrated Water-Side Economizer,” Appl. Therm. Eng., 105(5), pp. 372–384. [CrossRef]
Wang, C. H. , Tsui, Y. Y. , and Wang, C. C. , 2017, “ On Cold-Aisle Containment of a Container Datacenter,” Appl. Therm. Eng., 112(12), pp. 133–142. [CrossRef]
Wang, C. H. , Tsui, Y. Y. , and Wang, C. C. , 2017, “ Airflow Management on the Efficiency Index of a Container Data Center Having Overhead Air Supply,” ASME J. Electron. Packag., 139(4), p. 041008. [CrossRef]
Tatchell-Evans, M. , Kapur, N. , Summers, J. , Thompson, H. , and Oldham, D. , 2017, “ An Experimental and Theoretical Investigation of the Extent of Bypass Air Within Data Centres Employing Aisle Containment, and Its Impact on Power Consumption,” Appl. Energy, 186(86), pp. 457–469. [CrossRef]
Alkharabsheh, S. A. , Sammakia, B. G. , and Shrivastava, S. K. , 2015, “ Experimentally Validated Computational Fluid Dynamics Model for a Data Center With Cold Aisle Containment,” ASME J. Electron. Packag., 137(2), p. 021010. [CrossRef]
Nemati, K. , Alissa, H. , and Sammakia, B. , “ Performance of Temperature Controlled Perimeter and Row-Based Cooling Systems in Open and Containment Environment,” ASME Paper No. IMECE2015-52667.
Tradat, M. , Khalili, S. , Sammakia, B. , Ibrahim, M. , Peddle, T. , Calder, A. , Dawson, B. , Seymour, M. , Nemati, K. , and Alissa, H. , “ Comparison and Evaluation of Different Monitoring Methods in a Data Center Environment,” ASME Paper No. IPACK2017-74105.
Khalili, S. , Tradat, M. I. , Nemati, K. , Seymour, M. , and Sammakia, B. , 2018, “ Impact of Tile Design on the Thermal Performance of Open and Enclosed Aisles,” ASME J. Electron. Packag., 140(1), p. 010907. [CrossRef]
Arghode, V. K. , and Joshi, Y. , 2015, “ Measurement of Air Flow Rate Sensitivity to the Differential Pressure Across a Server Rack in a Data Center,” ASME J. Electron. Packag., 137(4), p. 041002. [CrossRef]
ASHRAE, 2011, “ ASHRAE TC9.9 Data Center Power Equipment Thermal Guidelines and Best Practices,” American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Atlanta, GA.
ASHRAE, 2011, “ Thermal Guidelines for Data Processing Environments—Expanded Data Center Classes and Usage Guidance,” Ashrae Tc9.9 2011, American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Atlanta, GA.
Nemati, K. , Alissa, H. A. , Murray, B. T. , Sammakia, B. G. , Tipton, R. , and Seymour, M. J. , 2017, “ Comprehensive Experimental and Computational Analysis of a Fully Contained Hybrid Server Cabinet,” ASME J. Heat Transfer, 139(8), p. 082101. [CrossRef]
Granger, R. A. , 1995, “ Laminar Pipe Flow,” Fluid Mech, Dover Publications, New York.
Tianyu, L. , and Zengji, C. , 2004, Hydrodynamics, China Architecture and Building Press, Beijing.
Demetriou, D. W. , and Khalifa, H. E. , 2013, “ Thermally Aware, Energy-Based Load Placement in Open-Aisle, Air-Cooled Data Centers,” ASME J. Electron. Packag., 135(3), p. 030906. [CrossRef]
ASHRAE. 2010, “ ASHRAE Guideline 2-2010 Engineering Analysis of Experimental Data,” American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Atlanta, GA.


Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Three-dimensional schematic of the data center

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

The experimental modular data center of fully contained cold aisle

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Experimental cases: (a) uncontained aisle (b) contained aisle, and (c) halving aisle

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Air flow through the layered structure

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Computational procedure of ΔT

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Measured temperature rises ΔT for cases 1–3: (a) case 1: open cold aisle system, (b) case 2: cold-aisle containment system, t = 100%, and (c) case 3: half-contained system, t = 50%

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

Measured total supply air flow rate of racks 1–5 for cases 1–3

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 8

Measured ΔPj contour plot for cases 1–3

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 9

Measured average ΔPd of each rack for cases 1–3

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 10

Comparison between the measured temperature rise of the air across the servers and the theoretical computation model



Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In