Silver Linings Systems Rafts have superior heat removal capabilities because they’ve been designed, not by an IT equipment manufacturer, container manufacturer or companies steeped in air conditioning science, but by a firm whose engineers are experienced professionals with an in-depth understanding of thermal dynamics and its effective application at industrial levels. IEA has been serving customers such as Caterpillar, Cummins and MTU with heat transfer products that combine performance and design elegance with value since 1985. Many of the products for which IEA radiators are specified consist of megawatt engines housed in ISO-style containers, presenting heat dissipation challenges that dwarf those posed by stacks of IT equipment housed inside a containerized data center.
The single biggest issue in data center operation is the economical solution of the heat problem. The Silver Linings Systems Raft concept is that solution.
Silver Linings Systems Rafts are a result of using such extensive knowledge and experience to solve the unique power and cooling challenges presented by containerized or modular data center structures.
Heat-Scrubbing Air Flow
The Main Challenge: A column of hot air moving across the fins of a heat exchanger core will have only a portion of its retained heat removed by those fins if only a portion of the air actually comes in contact with the fins. (Think of how much of the water in a flowing river ever touches either bank or the river’s bottom.) This is what happens when the hot air is allowed to move across the fins with little or no disturbance to its flow.
However, if the column of hot air can be made to move in irregular patterns (i.e. tumble) across the fins, the amount of air-to-fin surface contact for any given period of time with be increased. That will significantly increase the cooling capacity of the core without a corresponding increase in energy consumption. The key is to get the air to “tumble”.
The patented surface design of the fins in the Silver Linings Systems Rafts’ heat exchanger tube/fin cores creates enough turbulence in the hot air stream to increase heat removal up to 50% over the same amount that would be possible with “smooth” air. Yet it costs no more to move that air through the Rafts’ scrubbing core.
But improving airflow through the radiator’s core does not, by itself, generate PUEs as close to perfect as physics will allow.
Effectively Cooling Modular/Enclosed Data Centers
The Economic Challenge: The key to cost effectively cooling IT equipment housed in any form of enclosed structure is assuring that the cooling is applied proportionately to the heat being produced; in terms of both the level and location of the heat source.
Since many of the traditional cooling methods introduce air at the bottom of a rack and exhaust it at the top, equipment in the upper layers is forced to operate in considerably hotter conditions than that at the bottom. Some such systems even recommend rotating equipment top to bottom to equalize the damaging effects.
In systems that simply provide air to the middle of a rack, the problem is compounded, in that equipment located in both the lower and upper corners of a stack can experience performance and life-shortening higher temperatures.
Smart Air Flow
Silver Linings Systems Rafts solve this problem through the design of their air-flow system. Rather than just a few large fans pushing air, a Silver Linings Systems Raft uses a grid of smaller, high efficiency, variable speed, low energy-use units strategically placed to ensure complete coverage of all equipment in the rack and a more uniform heat dissipation.
In addition, each fan is electronically controlled to respond automatically to both temperature changes in and airflow resistance of specific pieces of equipment within the rack. Should areas of a rack be empty, the fans assigned to cool that area will never turn on. In other words, the fans operate only when and only to the degree needed, keeping energy use as low as possible, while maintaining the maximum desirable equipment environment.
Augmented Convective Cooling
While traditional cooling systems rely primarily on natural convection to circulate hot air up and away from the racks, Silver Linings Systems Rafts utilize fan-equipped return ducts that draw the heat laden exhaust air evenly away from the equipment, then up, over and back down through the heat exchanger core. This patented “push-pull” design, known as “augmented convective cooling” in Silver Linings Systems parlance, ensures more cooling air reaches more IT equipment in a more even, consistent and reliable way, ensuring the most complete, yet lowest cost, IT equipment cooling.
150% Upside Potential
Silver Linings Systems Rafts can continue to effectively cool even when kW density expands over time. On average, a Standard Silver Linings Systems modular data center can properly cool up to 150% more wattage/square foot than was originally specified. Such unique expandability greatly extends the life of the investment and increases flexibility when dealing with equipment upgrades. It also eliminates the need to obsolete data center structures, significantly reducing total investment and increasing the overall return.
But even providing the most effective and dependable containerized IT equipment cooling solution is just one of many reasons Silver Linings Systems Rafts are the best choice for any investment in a new or expanded data center. Among the many others benefits are:
- Lowest initial investment in a modular data center
- Continued low investment to accommodate on-going power density growth
- Lowest energy consumption when compared to alternative modular data centers
- No restrictions on brands or type of equipment housed in a modular data center
- No need to obsolete existing Silver Linings Systems Rafts when further expansion is needed
- No need to build-out or renovate buildings to accommodate a new or expanded data center
- Fastest delivery of modular data centers available
- Increased service efficiency and resulting lower maintenance costs
No loss of business efficiency or competitive edge due to inability to fund expansion of computing capacity.