UII UPDATE 111 | Q3 2021
Intelligence Update

New ASHRAE guidelines challenge efficiency drive

Earlier in 2021, ASHRAE’s Technical Committee 9.9 published an update — the fifth edition — of its Thermal Guidelines for Data Processing Environments. The update recommends important changes to data center thermal operating envelopes: the presence of pollutants is now a factor, and it introduces a new class of IT equipment for high-density computing. The new advice can, in some cases, lead operators to not only alter operational practices but also shift set points, a change that may impact both energy efficiency and contractual service level agreements (SLA) with data center services providers.

Since the original release in 2004, ASHRAE’s Thermal Guidelines have been instrumental in setting cooling standards for data centers globally. The 9.9 committee collects input from a wide cross-section of the IT and data center industry to promote an evidence-based approach to climatic controls, one which helps operators better understand both risks and optimization opportunities. Historically, most changes to the guidelines pointed data center operators toward further relaxations of climatic set points (e.g., temperature, relative humidity, dew point), which also stimulated equipment makers to develop more efficient air economizer systems.

Request an evaluation to view this report

Apply for a four-week evaluation of Uptime Intelligence; the leading source of research, insight and data-driven analysis focused on digital infrastructure.