Pros and Cons of Hot Aisle Containment

Did you know that Over 65% of IT equipment failures are directly attributed to inadequate, poorly maintained or failed air conditioning in the server room? So what does this statistic mean? In order to understand the benefits of hot aisle containment, you probably will want to know what it is. Hot aisle containment uses a physical barrier to guide hot exhaust airflow back to the AC return. Hot-Aisle Containment also encloses the hot aisles within the data center. The discharge air enters the enclosed hot aisle and is then directly redelivered to cooling equipment through a ceiling. The cool supply air is then introduced to the room through a raised floor. This process provides the benefits of hot aisle containment
One of the main benefits of hot-aisle containment is that it keeps the data centers cool. This eliminates the perception that your IT equipment isn’t being cooled sufficiently enough as well as allowing for some lower density areas to be freed if so desired. Another one of the benefits of hot aisle containment is the accurate distribution of supply air throughout the space. Because, as long as the cool air that is being introduced into the general space is being produced properly, and hot air is also being properly returned, there is nearly no need for any kind of expensive raised floor distribution systems or extensive ductwork.
However, a hot aisle containment system isn’t perfect. One of the main issues we see with this type of containment centers actually comes within the infrastructure. Data center technicians have reported many difficulties when needing to access equipment and its infrastructure. This is because a contained hot aisle can be a very uncomfortable place to work. While there is a temporary fix, which sees the problem being mitigated by using local cooling, this is not a long term solution. A company really needs to consider the temperatures associated with hot-aisle containment options, especially if a facility is going to need frequent access to their equipment. So long story short, in terms of data storage, there are many benefits of hot aisle containment. However, it is slightly flawed in terms of engineering access. Either way, if hot aisle containment solutions offers you what you most need for your company, why wouldn’t you use it?

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