A bit more than a year back, I published Computer Room Evaporative Cooling where I showed an evaporative cooling design from EcoCooling. Periodically, Alan Beresford sends me designs he’s working on. This morning he sent me a design they are working on for a 7MW data center in Ireland.
I like the design for a couple of reasons: 1) It’s a simple design and efficient design, and 2) it’s a nice example of a few important industry trends. The trends exemplified by this design are: 1) air-side economization, 2) evaporative cooling, 3) hot-aisle containment, and 4) very large plenums with controlled hot-air recycling. The diagrams follow and, for the most part, speak for themselves.
I expect mechanical designs with these broad characteristics are going to be showing up increasingly frequently over the next year or so primarily because it is a cost effective and environmentally sounds approach.
b: http://blog.mvdirona.com / http://perspectives.mvdirona.com
"Oh but imagine if you ran that heat through a turbine!"
I imagine the thermodynamic efficiency would be about 5%. Better be a cheap turbine.
If the heat from a datacenter was highly concentrated, you could run it through a turbine. But, its low grade heat. Essentially the air is not very hot. There isn’t enough heat energy to drive a turbine. There is enough heat to drive heat pumps so reclamation is possible: //perspectives.mvdirona.com/2009/12/02/DataCenterWasteHeatReclaimation.aspx
Oh but imagine if you ran that heat through a turbine!
Simone, you asked if the heat released from the facility is "wasted". What happens in all but a tiny few facilities that recover and reuse heat (e.g. //perspectives.mvdirona.com/content/binary/Hel_En_Eco-efficient_computer_hall.pdf) considerable power is spent removing the heat from the building.
Summary: The heat is almost always released to the environment — what is different here is that power is not wasted driving power intensive air conditioning systems. Its not a heat recovery system but its a very efficient way of cooling the servers.
the 2 arrows of hot air going out from the roof will be wasted?