Mechanical Obstructions to Data Center Enclosure Designs

Mechanical Obstructions

Before you consider an aesthetically pleasing design and layout of your Data Center enclosure, there are things to consider and recognize as mechanical obstructions in the area. Look around to ‘visualize’ your data center enclosure and make note of obstructions and/or physical limitations imposed by the existing structure. It is important to address your limitations before the design and layout phase begins. In most situations there will be physical obstructions, which create limitations due to existing configurations of CRAC-HAVC and fire detection / fire suppression systems. In most of these situations the decision making process comes down to what is easiest to move.

AmCraft air management systems are flexible in the installation layout, and unique modifications can be made to ensure a good fit. Our system can be modular, which allows additional flexibility for expansion of the curtain enclosure, removal or remounting around new server racks.

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Obstructions in a data center enclosure

Some obstructions include structural, electrical and HVAC diffuser units that may be necessary to be moved for the enclosure to work effectively. Other obstructions such as pipes, duct work and light fixtures can be worked around more easily than heavy equipment and structural elements. Since cooling both supply air and returned air is the primary focus, locations of the air supply and return registers are crucial. Keep in mind, extending ductwork externally is a consideration if a high percentage of other aspects are ’in place’.

One of the most common obstructions are the light fixtures. The curtain mounting hardware should be installed in such a way as to allow easy access to fixtures for light bulb changes and maintenance. The nature of AmCraft’s panel suspension system is such that light fixture access covers are accessible with a minimum amount of panel system component removal.

The design and layout of the room should be positioned in a way that takes full advantage of existing air flow patterns, is inclusive of the supply unit, and allows access to all sides of the server racks for effective maintenance of server units. Air Conditioner units are usually installed before a Data Center is built inside a facility, so it is important not to impede the air flow of the AC or HVAC units.

The curtains should not obstruct a popular walkway and be large enough for personnel entry and exit. The curtain system layout should not slow down a rapid exit from the room in case of an emergency, or prevent employees from seeing or hearing emergency warning systems.

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