Data centres are designed and built with a cooling system as standard in order to keep the equipment at a comfortable temperature. However, with heatwaves becoming more of a reoccurring event and climate change being a constant topic of discussion, are you prepared for when the world gets even hotter? Here’s what you can do to for data centre heatwave preparation.

Carry Out a High Temperature Incident Audit

By keeping record of high temperatures on-site year-on-year, you can analyse areas that get hotter than others and whether you need to invest in extra cooling equipment. This way, you can make any changes ahead of the upcoming summer season and move any equipment around to accommodate extra ventilation or cooling systems.

The initial design of your data centre is incredibly important and any additional equipment added must be thoroughly considered. It’s vital that no extra equipment that uses exhaust systems is installed as this will give out extra heat. If you use evaporative cooling systems, this extra heat will enter through the air inlet system and affect its performance.

Perform Regular Servicing & Maintenance

It’s essential for cooling units to be in peak condition ahead of summer, to prepare for the increase in temperatures as well as prevent any major repairs during extreme weather. Spikes in temperature can often lead to issues, so it’s important to work to avoid this as much as possible.

One way in which you can ensure your cooling equipment is performing optimally is by performing regular servicing and maintenance all year round. Make sure your services are all up to date and your equipment is tested frequently; this includes any backup cooling equipment. Cleaning and replacing filters are among the maintenance processes you should practice in order to ensure the equipment is running as efficiently as possible. Blocked filters can severely impact its performance and will make it work harder during these warm summer months.

Invest in Extra Cooling Equipment

As the UK weather is unpredictable, it’s always better to be overprepared than under when it comes to data centre heatwave preparation. Many data centres commonly follow the n+1 solution whereby there’s always one extra cooling system in place to maintain cooling capacity if any fail. Higher tier mission critical operations follow a 2n solution, so there are 2 sperate cooling systems which can run independently.

EcoCooling systems are often operated alongside backup air conditioning equipment, so this is one solution you can implement for your data centre. These data centres can operate evaporative cooling systems inside their required environmental envelope, either due to equipment or SLA requirements. They can then programme the equipment to switch over to back up AC depending on the temperature or humidity of the external air.

This ‘swapover system’ not only provides 2N cooling resilience, but operational costs are also significantly reduced when the evaporative cooling is used which, in most UK cities, is between 85-99% of the time (depending on operational envelope parameters), while utilising AC when necessary.

Evaporative cooling systems have shown to be particularly effective during UK heatwaves due to the hot and dry conditions. This means there is low relative humidity during hot weather, meaning the air can absorb a larger quantity of water, resulting in significant cooling effect. For example, on the 40ºC days seen in 2022 in the UK, data centres in central London were seeing inlet temperatures of 24/25ºC off their EcoCoolers.

Our range of data centre cooling units are used as part of a mechanical ventilation system and can reduce cooling costs by up to 90%. We’ve worked with a number of data centres across the UK, so if you’re looking for a reliable, cost-effective cooling solution for your data centre, get in touch with us today.