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Research Papers

Thermal Management Issues in Operational Data Centers: Computational Fluid Dynamics Analysis and Experimental Study

[+] Author and Article Information
Babak Fakhim

Faculty of Engineering,
Military Technological College,
Muscat 111 Oman;
University of Portsmouth,
Portsmouth P01 2UP, UK
e-mail: Babak.fakhim@gmail.com

Srinarayana Nagarathinam

School of Aerospace, Mechanical,
and Mechatronic Engineering,
The University of Sydney,
Sydney NSW 2006, Australia
e-mail: Srinarayana.nagarathinam@sydney.edu.au

Steven W. Armfield

School of Aerospace, Mechanical,
and Mechatronic Engineering,
The University of Sydney,
Sydney NSW 2006, Australia
e-mail: Steven.armfield@sydney.edu.au

Masud Behnia

Macquarie Graduate School of Management,
Macquarie University,
Sydney 2109, Australia
e-mail: Masud.behnia@gmail.com

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Heat Transfer Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF THERMAL SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING APPLICATIONS. Manuscript received June 29, 2016; final manuscript received September 27, 2016; published online April 4, 2017. Assoc. Editor: Ziad Saghir.

J. Thermal Sci. Eng. Appl 9(3), 031009 (Apr 04, 2017) (6 pages) Paper No: TSEA-16-1186; doi: 10.1115/1.4035943 History: Received June 29, 2016; Revised September 27, 2016

The increase in the number of data centers in the last decade, combined with higher power density racks, has led to a significant increase in the associated total electricity consumption, which is compounded by cooling inefficiencies. Issues, such as hot air recirculation in the data center room environment, provide substantial challenges in thermal manageability. Three operational data centers have been studied to identify the cooling issues. Field measurements of temperature were obtained and were compared to numerical simulations to evaluate the overall thermal behavior of the data centers and to identify the thermal issues.

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References

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Figures

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Fig. 6

Variation of the maximum temperature in the data center with grid size for (a) DC1, (b) DC2, and (c) DC3

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Fig. 7

Numerical and experimental temperature fields on a horizontal plane 1.8 m above the raised-floor for DC1: (a) numerical modeling and (b) field measurements

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Fig. 8

Numerical streamlines on a horizontal plane 1.8 m above the raised-floor for DC1

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Fig. 5

Operational DC3 layout

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Fig. 4

Operational DC2 layout

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Fig. 12

Numerical streamlines on a horizontal plane 1.8 m above the raised-floor for DC3

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Fig. 3

Operational DC1 layout

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Fig. 2

A schematic of the experimental apparatus

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Fig. 1

Racks arranged in a hot-aisle/cold-aisle configuration

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Fig. 9

Numerical and experimental temperature fields on a horizontal plane 1.8 m above the raised-floor for DC2: (a) numerical modeling and (b) field measurements

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Fig. 10

Numerical streamlines on a horizontal plane 1.8 m above the raised-floor for DC2

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Fig. 11

Numerical and experimental temperature fields on a horizontal plane 1.8 m above the raised-floor for DC3: (a) numerical modeling and (b) field measurements

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