Datacenter Cabinet Airflow Recommendations
Air flow to reduce the heat in cabinets in datacenters must be done correctly, so anything that will disrupt that must be dealt with. Maintain unbroken rows of cabinets as a missing cabinet allows bypass air to re-circulate and disrupts the hot aisle/cold aisle air flow, so fill any unused cabinet spaces with empty cabinets that are fully blanked inside to eliminate airflow through them. Inside each cabinet, seal all openings between the front and the rear as this will force cooling air to pass through the electronics. Use commercially available blanking plates that snap or fasten into the cabinet equipment mounting rails to seal any unused rack spaces until required and this also applies to modular panels as again this forces cooling air to pass through the electronics.
Use perforated front and rear cabinet doors with a minimum 60% open area in order to promote balanced front-to-rear airflow through the cabinet and monitor temperature and humidity in each cabinet. Track that data initially and as equipment is added to determine when maximum capacity is reached or additional cooling is required. Place more sensitive equipment at the bottom of the rack (closer to the cold air supply) and less sensitive equipment, i.e., patch panels, at the top of the cabinet.
Written by James Donovan
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