Evaporative Cooling Data Centre Case Studies
Award Winning Data Centre Cooling – Aberdeen University
The University of Aberdeen Creates a Low Carbon Shared Services Data Centre Facility using EcoCooling evaporative cooling. (Awards won and pending).
The University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen College, Robert Gordon University and Banff and Buchan College required a ‘Shared Services’ data centre to replace the existing, outdated facility. Whilst the existing site had sufficient space it lacked power and cooling capacity and was operating at a PUE of 2.6!
Dynamic Mode Temperature Control –Unlike conventional cooling systems that typically require equipment intake temperatures to be increased to support free cool mode, EcoCooling's system can be configured in "Dynamic" mode. This mode of operation allows cold aisle temperatures of 18°C for the vast majority of the operating period without any compromise in energy efficiency. By reducing equipment inlet air, temperature power demands of server fans will reduce whilst improving equipment reliability. During warmer ambient conditions the system simply allows the temperature to gradually rise falling back again as external temperatures reduce.
Attemperation" – EcoCooling implemented its "intelligent" attemperation system for the University which accurately mixes a percentage of hot exit air with cold intake air to produce a stable equipment intake temperature irrespective of external ambient conditions. This is achieved through a series of air dampers and variable speed low energy fans controlled via a Schneider Electric Crouzet PLC control system.
In Dynamic Mode, the control system can also be programmed to gradually (within the rate of change parameters defined by ASHRAE) ramp up / down temperature to ensure humidity levels are maintained within class A1 data centre operating modes (10% to 80% RH).
Fan Power - With the exception of the programmable logic controller, PLC, the only power consumed by the EcoCooling system is fan power. Energy efficiency EC fans were used which use significantly less energy than conventional fan technology. EC stands for Electronically Commutated where the fan is fitted with a permanent magnet motor (PMM). EC technology enables continuous adjustment of the fan speed to meet the cooling demands of the data centre. Each fan is individually speed controlled via the EcoCooling PLC control system. Because motor power associated with EC fans varies with the cube of the motor speed, any reduction in fan speed results in energy savings. For example a 20% reduction in fan speed results in 49 % energy savings. Other benefits over traditional fan technology include significant noise reduction and remote monitoring via Modbus.
Dual Filtration – The solution has been implemented with a combination of G3 and G4 air intake filtration systems designed to eliminate potential contamination. A simple “filter wall” reduces the time taken to replace filters during quarterly service visits.
“EcoCooling, and their installers set out to deliver what we felt was a very ambitious programme of work with a targeted PUE of 1.2. We and the joint venture partners have been very pleased with the standard of the build and delighted that our PUE is less than 1.15 during the summer. We have been left with a data centre that is fit for purpose and provides a secure foundation from which to deliver IT services to the HE and FE sector in the North East of Scotland.”
Data Centre & Operations Manager
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