Data Centre Free Air Cooling
To benefit from the huge potential savings in new small to medium data centres, we would recommend implementing CyberAir 3PRO CW units with downflow air conduction. This solution can be equipped with the Plenum free cooling box. With this option, free cooling is automatically combined with the chiller system's compressor which cools in three variable stages.
- The outside air damper opens
- Outside air is conveyed through the filter of the FreeCool Plenum directly into the unit, then into the data centre
- The compressor of the chiller system remains off, saving the cooling energy normally required
- Includes all Items under 'Free Cooling'
- The compressor of the chiller system is additionally switched on for support
- When the outside air damper is open, the compressor of the chiller system runs in partial load mode
- Cools exclusively using the chiller system's compressor
- The outside air damper remains closed, and no outside air is used for cooling
- Return air damper open 100 %
The FCP design with the dampers on top is a flexible construction that takes up no extra space.
Efficient Direct Free Cooling
Direct free cooling systems can be installed in most countries across Europe as these geological locations yield long periods of optimal temperatures. This means compressors are not required to operate as often due to the mix of outside cold and inside hot air, saving on electrical costs. If the outdoor air is too cold, a certain proportion of warm air from the data centre is mixed in to make controlled, tempered air. There is on average a difference of 3 degrees when comparing outside and inside temperatures.
In urban areas, air quality can be poor and full of particles, which is damaging to modern IT equipment. Therefore, we recommend direct free cooling should only be utilised if filtering can control the air quality. We can help advise and provide a tailored solution around your current location and air supply.
Data Centre Free Air Cooling Trends
A survey conducted in 2019 by the Uptime Institute asked over 500 data centre vendors about their client's use of free air cooling using the following two approaches:
Direct Air - In order to cool a data centre, external air is drawn in by an evaporative cooler, before passing through a series of filters before entering the cold aisle. If the temperature of the external air drops too far, a mixture of outside air and exhaust air is combined to reach the desired temperature of the facility.
Indirect Air - A heat exchanger is used to draw in outside air, creating a barrier between the air inside the data centre and the cooler outside air. This technique prevents pollutants from getting into the white space, while also managing humidity levels.
The survey revealed that free air cooling projects were becoming increasingly popular, with indirect free air cooling being slightly more favoured than direct air. 84% of the cooling system suppliers stated that some of their clients were utilising indirect air cooling (74% for direct air). Only 16% of the vendors reported that none of their customers were utilising indirect free-air cooling (26% for direct air).
Increasing cost-effectiveness and heightened attention to environmental impact will be the major motivators of free air cooling. This free cooling system requires less capital investment and has cheaper operational costs in comparison to the traditional mechanical cooling systems, while also diminishing a data centre's carbon footprint therefore minimising it's environmental effects.
Save On Electrical Costs With Our Cooling Solutions
Keeping new advancements in data centre cooling in consideration, it can be seen that constructing such systems now can lead to a reduction in upfront investments (CapEx) and recurring operational costs (OpEx). Free air cooling systems can save around 30% on OpEx costs. Another advantage is that they can also provide huge savings on CapEx. The explanation for this is that the necessary modular free-air cooling devices are designed with smaller compressors that run less compared to traditional air conditioning systems.
An alternate solution is provided by adiabatic cooling systems which utilise water to cool down data centres and decrease the dependence on HFCs. Earlier, these systems weren't accessible to all data centres since they could only be used when water was accessible and economical. However, with the introduction of newer adiabatic technologies, particularly the more modern chillers, they are able to run in adiabatic mode even when water is not available. This way, businesses no longer have to choose between adiabatic and non-adiabatic cooling - the same system can facilitate both, regardless of the circumstances.
Please click below to explore our various bespoke cooling solutions.