Data centers often come under fire for their high energy consumption, and people often question whether or not a sustainable future for data centers is possible. In the past, data center cooling consumed vast amounts of energy and wasn’t particularly efficient. However, advancements are being made daily to ensure that data center cooling has a future with sustainability in mind.
Computer Room Air Conditioning (CRAC) and raised floors were once the most common method of keeping data centers cool, but this method wasn’t energy efficient as it used vast amounts of energy without being able to maintain an optimal cooling environment. Used in combination with aisle containment, CRAC is slightly more successful at keeping data center computing equipment cool, but with denser and more powerful hardware becoming the norm, CRAC cannot keep up with cooling demand.
More and more data center cooling solutions are now being engineered with sustainability and energy efficiency in mind. It is vital to generate as much cooling output as possible with minimal energy consumption and minimal impact on the environment. Solutions such as in row cooling have emerged in recent years as a way to efficiently cool data center equipment with precision and accuracy. In row coolers are positioned within the rows of data centers as the name implies, extracting heat from the hardware at the source rather than attempting to cool the room as a whole, which provide much more precise and effective cooling that doesn’t waste energy. In row coolers take up less space, don’t require the use of raised flooring, and when coupled with aisle containment can save up to 60% in energy consumption compared to CRAC. In row cooling is an easily scalable solution too, meaning that as your business grows new inrows can be added along with new cabinets to ensure that your cooling solution is ready to keep up with the future of your data center.
Water cooling for data centers is also a much more popular and efficient form of cooling instead of relying on air. Water cooling systems run contained cold water along computing equipment, extracting heat as it passes. Rear door heat exchangers combine the best of both worlds, using a combination of air and water cooling that is highly effective and efficient. Fans draw ambient air into the rack, and hot exhaust air is drawn over cooling fluid and expelled into the room as cold air. This maintains an ideal and efficient cold temperature throughout the whole room without the need for additional air conditioning units. To ensure a sustainable future for water cooling, innovations are being made, such as using sea or river water instead of chilled fresh water to reduce water consumption. In some data center facilities, the waste hot water is recycled to be used as hot water in bathroom facilities, reducing water consumption further.
USystems and Coldlogik are committed to creating data center cooling solutions that are robust, efficient and future-proof. If you’re looking for state of the art cooling with a great return on investment, check out our range today.