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Announcing the 2015 Impact Awards winners


Upsite Technologies' bright idea for cool servers

Source:  TechTarget

If your organization has a data center, chances are good you spend a lot of energy keeping it cool. That drives some IT operations off to a colocation provider or the cloud and others to cooling upgrades, which can be a huge effort. Unless you go modular.

Modern Infrastructure readers selected Upsite Technologies AisleLok Modular Containment for this year's Bright Idea Award, which recognizes a brand-new technology product.

The idea behind containment is to keep the cold air pumped in by a data center cooling system separate from the hot air exhausted by servers. That prevents hot and cold air from mixing so that the cooling systems don't have to work as hard. Most data centers that use containment were designed for it from the get-go. And for those that weren't, it's a difficult and expensive retrofit.

Not so with Upsite Technology's AisleLok Modular Containment system. According to readers, this after-market containment system looks like it's a breeze to set up. AisleLok's secret sauce is its "clever design and features, including magnetic attachments and quick, tool-less installation," wrote one reader. It is applied on a per-rack basis, and can be easily moved and reused in different parts of the data center. The containment it provides helps lower data center temperatures by as much as 20 degrees Fahrenheit, the company claims.

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How do you separate cold/cool inlet air and hot discharge air in the data center today?
It depends on the data center, as we manage more than one. In our general data center, we use cold-aisle containment between hot/cold rows, using plastic sheeting to contain and direct the inlet air. In our HPC data center we also do that, but it's much more rigid, with solid walls between rows, blanking panels, cold-locks, and so on. The general data center uses plenum-pressure forced air, whereas the HPC data center uses drop cooling.