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Cooling Effectiveness of a Data Center Room under Overhead Airflow via Entropy Generation Assessment in Transient Scenarios

1
Instituto de Investigación Multidisciplinario en Ciencia y Tecnología, Departamento de Ingeniería Mecánica, Universidad de La Serena, Benavente 980, La Serena 1720170, Chile
2
Laboratory for Advanced Thermal and Fluid Systems, Mechanical Engineering Department, Villanova University, 800 East Lancaster Avenue, Villanova, PA 19085, USA
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Facultad de Ingeniería y Ciencias, Escuela de Ingeniería Industrial, Universidad Diego Portales, Av. Ejército 441, Santiago 8370191, Chile
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Entropy 2019, 21(1), 98; https://doi.org/10.3390/e21010098
Received: 6 December 2018 / Revised: 12 January 2019 / Accepted: 18 January 2019 / Published: 21 January 2019
Forecasting data center cooling demand remains a primary thermal management challenge in an increasingly larger global energy-consuming industry. This paper proposes a dynamic modeling approach to evaluate two different strategies for delivering cold air into a data center room. The common cooling method provides air through perforated floor tiles by means of a centralized distribution system, hindering flow management at the aisle level. We propose an idealized system such that five overhead heat exchangers are located above the aisle and handle the entire server cooling demand. In one case, the overhead heat exchangers force the airflow downwards into the aisle (Overhead Downward Flow (ODF)); in the other case, the flow is forced to move upwards (Overhead Upward Flow (OUF)). A complete fluid dynamic, heat transfer, and thermodynamic analysis is proposed to model the system’s thermal performance under both steady state and transient conditions. Inside the servers and heat exchangers, the flow and heat transfer processes are modeled using a set of differential equations solved in MATLAB™ 2017a. This solution is coupled with ANSYS-Fluent™ 18, which computes the three-dimensional velocity, temperature, and turbulence on the Airside. The two approaches proposed (ODF and OUF) are evaluated and compared by estimating their cooling effectiveness and the local Entropy Generation. The latter allows identifying the zones within the room responsible for increasing the inefficiencies (irreversibilities) of the system. Both approaches demonstrated similar performance, with a small advantage shown by OUF. The results of this investigation demonstrated a promising approach of data center on-demand cooling scenarios. View Full-Text
Keywords: data center heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC); overhead cooling; entropy generation; dynamic modeling data center heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC); overhead cooling; entropy generation; dynamic modeling
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MDPI and ACS Style

Silva-Llanca, L.; del Valle, M.; Ortega, A.; Díaz, A.J. Cooling Effectiveness of a Data Center Room under Overhead Airflow via Entropy Generation Assessment in Transient Scenarios. Entropy 2019, 21, 98. https://doi.org/10.3390/e21010098

AMA Style

Silva-Llanca L, del Valle M, Ortega A, Díaz AJ. Cooling Effectiveness of a Data Center Room under Overhead Airflow via Entropy Generation Assessment in Transient Scenarios. Entropy. 2019; 21(1):98. https://doi.org/10.3390/e21010098

Chicago/Turabian Style

Silva-Llanca, Luis; del Valle, Marcelo; Ortega, Alfonso; Díaz, Andrés J. 2019. "Cooling Effectiveness of a Data Center Room under Overhead Airflow via Entropy Generation Assessment in Transient Scenarios" Entropy 21, no. 1: 98. https://doi.org/10.3390/e21010098

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