ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 44

TECHNICAL FEATURE
Hot-Aisle and Cold-Aisle Containment
Comparing Thermal
Performance for Data
Center Cooling
BY JINKYUN CHO, PH.D., ASSOCIATE MEMBER ASHRAE
Data center air containment systems are considered the most effective techniques for
IT cooling control.1 Both hot- and cold-aisle containment can improve the predictability
and efficiency of cold air distribution. The thermal performance of both air
containment methods are analyzed and quantified in this article. Both simulation and
experimental results show that using hot-aisle containment can effectively improve
the thermal environment.
Typical power densities of data centers range
from between 540 W/m2 (50 W/ft2) and 2200 W/m2
(204 W/ft2). In extreme cases they exceed 10 kW/m2
(929 W/ft2).2 In the hyper-scale data center environment,
cooling system standards that can respond to
changes in IT industries are required due to the increase
in the density of IT equipment (more than 30 kW/rack).3
Cooling is a constant concern with data centers. IT
equipment must be kept within a proper temperature
range 24/7, and it is very expensive to do this. Supplyside
systems include cooling, power supply, power distribution,
and they account for almost half of the total
energy consumption in a data center.4
The aim of the hot-aisle containment (HAC) and coldaisle
containment (CAC) air distribution strategies
that have become prominent for data center cooling
is to remove the heat of IT equipment efficiently. The
cutting-edge servers that operate under a variable IT
load have led to unusual demands on traditional cooling
systems. Both HAC and CAC can improve the predictability
and efficiency of a data center cooling system.
They provide significant energy savings compared to
traditional uncontained configurations and can save as
much as 23% cooling energy, which can translate to a
10% reduction in PUE.1
Air Containment Strategy
Air containment strategies can improve energy efficiency,
allow for a uniform inlet air temperature for IT
equipment and avoid the hot spots typically found in
Jinkyun Cho, Ph.D., is a professor in the department of Building and Plant Engineering at Hanbat National University in Deajeon, South Korea.
44
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ASHRAE Journal - August 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ASHRAE Journal - August 2021

Contents
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - Intro
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - Cover1
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - Cover2
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 1
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - Contents
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 3
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 4
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 5
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 6
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 7
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 8
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 9
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 10
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 11
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 12
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 13
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 14
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 15
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 16
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 17
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 18
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 19
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 20
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 21
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 22
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 23
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 24
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 25
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 26
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 27
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 28
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 29
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 30
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 31
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 32
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 33
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 34
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 35
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 36
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 37
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 38
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 39
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 40
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 41
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 42
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 43
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 44
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 45
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 46
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - 47
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ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - Cover3
ASHRAE Journal - August 2021 - Cover4
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