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Rack Level Modeling of Air Flow Through Perforated Tile in a Data Center

[+] Author Affiliations
Vaibhav K. Arghode, Yogendra Joshi

Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA

Pramod Kumar

Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, KA, India

Thomas S. Weiss, Gary Meyer

Triad Floors Inc., Denver, CO

Paper No. IMECE2012-85203, pp. 1059-1069; 11 pages
  • ASME 2012 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 9: Micro- and Nano-Systems Engineering and Packaging, Parts A and B
  • Houston, Texas, USA, November 9–15, 2012
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4525-7
  • Copyright © 2012 by ASME


Effective air flow distribution through perforated tiles is required to efficiently cool servers in a raised floor data center. We present detailed computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling of air flow through a perforated tile and its entrance to the adjacent server rack. The realistic geometrical details of the perforated tile, as well as of the rack are included in the model. Generally models for air flow through perforated tiles specify a step pressure loss across the tile surface, or porous jump model based on the tile porosity. An improvement to this includes a momentum source specification above the tile to simulate the acceleration of the air flow through the pores, or body force model. In both of these models geometrical details of tile such as pore locations and shapes are not included. More details increase the grid size as well as the computational time. However, the grid refinement can be controlled to achieve balance between the accuracy and computational time. We compared the results from CFD using geometrical resolution with the porous jump and body force model solution as well as with the measured flow field using Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) experiments. We observe that including tile geometrical details gives better results as compared to elimination of tile geometrical details and specifying physical models across and above the tile surface. A modification to the body force model is also suggested and improved results were achieved.

Copyright © 2012 by ASME



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