The growing relevance of cloud-based data solutions in various business applications has no doubt transcended across industries, which in lieu of the traditional methods of data processing, has created new channels for client engagement, information dissemination and learning, and business operations.
This consequently enhanced the way IT infrastructures are designed and built, leading to the modern data center operations, which in many ways, lessen the burden on costs and management for various businesses and organizations.
Typically built as a large room or building that houses computer servers, networking systems, cables, storage devices, and other types of IT equipment, a data center is a critical infrastructure that private companies, institutions, and government agencies use to run their mission-critical systems and cloud-based solutions.
As a dedicated facility for IT operations, a data center runs the whole gamut of data processing, data storage, data management, data distribution, and other IT processes which are vital to any organization’s various operations.
Protecting data centers and maintaining their reliability as a locus of IT hardware and software operations mean the effective provision of a robust IT support infrastructure, successful deployment of cloud-based services and applications for clients, and ensuring maximum security, optimum performance, and peak efficiency in all facets of the operation.
Given the critical importance of a data centers, ensuring its operational stability and security are the foremost priority of IT managers.
Heat Puts Data Centers at Constant Risk
Today, one the main challenges that IT and business managers have to confront is ensuring that data centers remain responsive to the growing demands for huge data exchanges while remaining flexible and robust in coping with the greater strains put on them by a large amount of data that has to be managed, stored, and distributed.
Modern data centers, in other words, require bigger computing power to ensure greater data handling and management capability. But as more power is used and more energy are consumed by the IT equipment, more heat is generated as a result.
It is worth noting that while data centers vary in terms of space design, facility construction, security system deployment, and even electrical and mechanical configurations, they all share one thing in common—housing a large amount of electronic equipment that all generate heat.
Notwithstanding the state and quality of the ventilation system and the room temperature, the heat that is constantly generated by the many IT equipment inside the data center—including servers, communication gear, and storage equipment—make cooling one of the biggest challenges in data center operations.
Effective Heat Dissipation Protects Data Centers
The main function of a cooling system in a data center is more on removing the heat that is generated by the equipment than on providing comfort for the people that goes in inside. The reason is to protect all the equipment and keep them from overheating which might cause downtime. Experiencing downtime may result in loss opportunities and engagements, and in some cases, can cause financial losses.
While just one key component of a data center infrastructure, it can’t be denied that a cooling system is a critical aspect in ensuring the safety of equipment and the delivery of smooth data center operation.
Ensuring an effective cooling infrastructure for a data center starts with finding the right air conditioner. The system must not only be capable of providing sufficient cooling temperature but also versatile enough to work in a unique environment with unique cooling requirements like a data center.
The question is, “What is the best cooling system for a data center?”
The Data Center Cooling Infrastructure
In a data center, the cooling system is part of the whole facility infrastructure and deployed in the same way as any other equipment inside. It typically consists of the so-called Computer Room Air Conditioners (CRAC) that works like your normal room air conditioner at home and the Computer Room Air Handlers (CRAH) that works like the chillers that are normally installed in large commercial applications. Mainly, the difference between these two systems lies on the type of compound that’s inside the cooling coil used. The former cools the space by blowing air on cooling coil with a refrigerant; the latter cools the room by blowing air on a cooling coil with chilled water.
Basic Requirements for Effective Data Center Cooling Solution
When looking for the right cooling option for a data center, you should consider the following:
• Cooling performance. The system must be powerful enough to provide the right cooling temperature that would effectively dissipate the heat inside the data center.
• Flexibility. The system must be flexible enough to be installed or deployed as part of, if not a supporting/complementary system to the whole data center infrastructure.
• Energy-efficiency. Data centers require a large amount of energy and your choice of a cooling system must be energy-efficient enough to enable you to lower your energy use without impacting the level of cooling that the data center needs.
Why Traditional Cooling Systems Would Not Work for Data Centers?
While they are used—either due to lack of knowledge or lack of options—traditional cooling systems do not typically work in a data center environment. Prone to generating fluctuating temperatures (hot spots and cold spots), conventional air conditioners just don’t have the capability to provide balanced temperature distribution, which is very essential to securing the IT infrastructure in a data center. Additionally, the operations cost would be significantly huge because traditional air conditioners typically consume a greater amount of energy.
The energy losses that are associated with these systems are very possible and real as well, which should be a big turnoff especially if you’re looking for cost-effectivity and energy savings.
When it comes to versatility, traditional cooling systems would not always work in a unique environment like a data center where its conceptual and structural designs require seamless integration with the whole infrastructure while ensuring optimized cooling and dehumidification capabilities.
Ductless Mini Split for Your Data Center: Why It’s the Best Option?
Faced with demands for greater cooling capability from air conditioners for the data center infrastructure, data center administrators and IT managers are continuously on the lookout for a better cooling system that can hurdle cooling limitations and go beyond the cooling constraints that are normally experienced in a data center environment. The introduction of the ductless mini split system made things possible, generating a decent amount of excitement and approval when it comes to data center cooling applications.
As one of the most innovative, powerful, energy-efficient, and versatile air conditioning solutions, ductless mini splits, when deployed, provide data centers with the following benefits:
• High cooling performance. With the IT equipment constantly generating a great amount of heat, data centers need a cooling system that can provide above average cooling performance. Ductless mini split systems provide more than average cooling. Mini splits are capable of providing the cool temperature at such a high level that it can be practically used in any type of climate and environment.
• Easy installation. Data centers are designed differently and can be found in different types of locations. These are the main sources of constraints when it comes to installing traditional systems. With ductless mini splits, installation issues would never be a problem at all. Consisting of an indoor compressor unit and an indoor air handler that are connected by refrigerant lines and a power cable, ductless mini splits can be installed in any type of data center wherever the location or whatever the type of configuration is.
• Temperature control. Ductless mini splits provide smart control over the cooling system. Installing a mini split solution in a data center will enable you to properly regulate the temperature inside the facility, control the temperature usage, and effectively maintain the climate in a data center environment without even going inside.
• High-reliability. In a critical infrastructure like the data center, you can’t overstate the importance of having a highly-reliable climate control system that can provide consistent cooling 24-hours nonstop without any impact on performance or operational reliability.
• Low maintenance. Equipped with advanced refrigeration, fan, and filtration systems, ductless mini splits can help you save a lot of money due to low maintenance costs.
• Scalability. Flexible and designed for multi-environment applications, ductless mini split systems can be scaled up depending on your needs or requirements. If you think that you need to expand your data center, for example, you can simply add air handler units which will not cost much compared to installing an entirely new HVAC system.
• Seamless Integration. Ductless mini split systems are better designed and more suitable than other HVAC systems in terms of capability to be integrated into the whole data center infrastructure.
Temperature impacts the performance of the IT equipment inside the data center. While many HVAC systems can be used in a data center environment, not all of these systems are capable of providing a consistent high cooling temperature that is required in ensuring a longer lifespan and peak performance of the data center equipment.
Ductless mini split systems are built with better cooling technologies, advanced airflow distribution mechanisms, and intelligent control systems that will enable you to ensure maximum performance and results from your data center operations.