7 Tips for Taking Care of Your Data Centre During a Heatwave

Vertiv rejects the use of generators during periods of extreme temperatures and opts for prevention.

Heat is one of the enemies of technology. The arrival of summer and high temperature waves becomes yet another challenge for data centre operators to deal with.

Vertiv recommends following a number of guidelines such as “running as many cooling units as possible”, which would lower individual load and save energy with teamwork controls, and “using predictive models for thermal impacts, rather than historical data”, due to climate change and the increasingly recurring phenomenon of extreme heat.

Another measure is to study new cooling systems, such as liquid refrigerants, closed-loop chilled water cooling, or free cooling.

To these previous recommendations, Vertiv now adds four more to mitigate the effects of heat stress.

Firstly, it advises “clean or replace the air filters” of existing refrigeration and air conditioning systems in the facilities to protect those electronic systems that are sensitive to airborne particles.

In this respect, “accelerating planned maintenance and service” can help. Vertiv encourages companies to become proactive and preventative, and talks about cleaning coils in condensers and maintaining refrigerant charge levels to try to prevent unplanned failures from occurring.

“Activating available efficiency tools” in uninterruptible power supply systems contributes to the goal of limiting the need for power at critical times.

Finally, it never hurts to “tap into alternative energy sources”, off-grid. That is, solutions such as solar panels, including those off-site, remote wind farms, or lithium-ion batteries.

“The use of generators during heat waves is not advisable unless there is a power outage,” says Vertiv. “Diesel generators produce more greenhouse gas emissions associated with climate change than alternative energy backup options. In fact, organisations should postpone planned testing of their generators during times of high temperatures.