Environmental Control Systems for Data Centers

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The proper operation of Data Center systems depends on maintaining the right equilibrium of its environmental conditions. Overheating or extreme humidity conditions can produce failures in the systems and hardware components. The key is maintaining optimal conditions so that the equipment can operate at the best possible conditions and keeping the facilities controlled through environmental control systems.

How must the environmental levels be maintained in order to guarantee safety? Regarding room temperature, the ideal situation in between 21 and 23 degrees Celsius. The equipment can operate within a wide range of temperatures, but keeping the temperature around 22 degrees Celsius provides several advantages; better system reliability and a small security margin in case of environmental control system failure.

Regarding humidity, keeping environmental relative humidity between 45% and 50% guarantees proper system operation. It is the same as with temperature: we can operate at a wide range of humidity ratios, but keeping the aforementioned values gives us a bonus in safety. It helps us prevent possible rust problems due to low humidity levels, as well as reduce the risk of static and electrostatic discharges and gives us more time in the face of a possible failure in the environmental control system.

Wireless or wired environmental control systems help us control the conditions of temperature, air flow, noise, light intensity, humidity and presence of liquids, among others, through sensors. These systems keep us informed through a website, emails or any SNMP trap collector system and usually support several protocols: HTTP, SMTP/POP, SNMP, FTP, PDA, WAP, and XML. In addition, we can access real-time updated information through a computer or a smartphone.

These devices usually have an internal hub of serial ports that allows us to incorporate more sensors if necessary, which provides room for tiered growth through progressive investment.

In the end, it is all about understanding the needs of our equipment and making the right investments. Monitoring these conditions and the possibility of keeping controlled records of their evolution help decrease response times when failures occur as well as anticipate said failures and have a more comprehensive control over the facilities. It provides only advantages.

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