How To Create a Data Center Airflow Management Plan

A crucial aspect for data centers to achieve maximum performance and keep them profitable is maintaining their temperature. Due to the number of servers in a data center, it can be easy for temperatures to rise and reach levels that can hinder performance. A way to prevent this starts with devising an airflow management plan that can ensure there are cooler temperatures. Learn how to create a data center airflow management plan ahead.

Determine the Power Usage Effectiveness

A common practice Google uses with its data centers around the world is routinely measuring the Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE). By determining the PUE in your data center and doing it often, you can track levels of performance. A PUE can serve as the first indication of where airflow improvements are necessary.

Detect Hotspots

The next tip on how to create a data center airflow management plan is to detect the hotspots. This is because lower temperatures are the key to the performance of a data center and figuring out the hot spots will help you figure out where to place various objects. Hot spots can typically occur behind a server where the data center cabling is located.

Consider These Techniques for Proper Airflow

Now that you have an idea of the level certain areas of your data center are performing at, you can take the next step in devising your airflow management plan. There are several techniques that can be used to ensure proper airflow in a data center. Here are some tactics to consider:

  • Using hot and cold aisle containment is becoming a common practice that prevents cold and hot air from mixing.
  • Blanking or filler panels can help ensure that the cold air is forced to move through your active equipment.
  • Free cooling is another tactic you can use to cool data centers that takes advantage of water instead of chillers.
  • Make sure your data center server racks are outfitted with doors with enough perforation that allow for enough cold, inlet air and allows warm air to exit properly.