What is Data Centre Aisle Containment?
Data Centre Containment refers to the various forms of aisle containment that are used in Data Centres to segregate hot aisles from cold aisles.
There are two ways to achieve this. One way is to contain the cold air within the cold aisle through the installation of a Cold Aisle Containment (CAC) system. Alternatively, the hot aisle can be contained and the hot exhaust air directed into the return plenum via the installation of a Hot Aisle Containment (HAC) system.
These aisle containment systems can either be permanent fully-enclosed systems or modular partially-enclosed solutions the benefits from which produce similar results.
Containing and segregating hot air from cold air and preventing the two from mixing helps optimise cooling systems. It is this optimisation of cooling systems that leads to energy cost savings.
Benefits of Aisle Containment
Aisle Containment protects IT equipment from hotspots which can reduce equipment performance and lifetime, as well as causing issues with airflow management.
As mentioned above, segregating hot or cold aisles by installing an aisle containment system enables cooling optimisation gains that lead to energy savings through reduced fan energy, reduced chiller operating costs and increasing the opportunity to utilise free cooling.
Both CAC or HAC systems produce similar results; with several factors to consider when deciding which system is best. These considerations will be reviewed in a separate future blog.
If Data Centre airflow management is to be fully improved then the implementation of an aisle containment system will be a requirement.