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Optimization of data center cooling

Courtesy of St. Petersburg Polytechnic

CFD software is the must-have tool of data center designers. They use it for thermal management of both individual racks and entire data centers. In this rack application, CoolitDC was used to boost rack cooling efficiency by optimizing air flow. The optimization permitted using warmer incoming air without adversely affecting the cluster cooling, resulting in a sizeable reduction in data center power consumption.

The analyzed system cluster, has cold air entering at the bottom of the plenum on left, traversing each node and exiting via the plenum on the right. Such racks have greater airflow through the top nodes resulting in correspondingly lower temperatures. Since the lower nodes must be maintained at no higher than their maximum permitted temperatures, top nodes are needlessly overcooled wasting energy.

Using CoolitDC and optimization methods the designer solved hundreds of cases to determine the optimal rack configuration. CoolitDC's powerful solver dispatched all the cases within just a few hours providing all the necessary information to optimize the rack configuration. The resulting design was 50% more energy efficient than the initial rack configuration.

Airflow entering bottom of rack delivers optimized cooling.

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