Aisle containment restricts the loss of cold air, and prevents the mixing of cold air with hot exhaust air, optimising data centre efficiency. Cross-Guard’s cold and hot aisle containment systems are highly versatile products that can be retrofitted to any type of cabinets, easily modified or re-installed to suit changing requirements.
Hot aisle containment has gained increasing popularity as denser computing and power loads have evolved. The hot aisle ensures that hot exhaust air from the racks is contained within the aisle, enabling the rest of the data centre to become a large reservoir of cold air. It is similar to cold aisle containment systems, in that the racks are normally lined up in rows to form pods.
The hot air is ducted away, either via a plenum space in the ceiling, or using large ducts connected to the CRAH unit. This set up can lend itself well to very large purpose built data centres employing adiabatic cooling, for example. The aisle containment will typically need to be extended upwards to connect with the overhead plenum/ducting, or ‘chimney’ cabinets can be used.
One popular alternative to this approach is known as in-row cooling, where CRAC units are built into the cabinet rows. The hot aisle will then typically look identical to a cold aisle with a flat aisle roof, and there is no requirement for a hot air plenum. This provides a more granular cooling as in-row CRAC fan speeds are controlled individually.