Air Handler Unit CFD Analysis
Computer Room Air Conditioning
EDPAC International is based in Carrigaline and Newmarket in Co. Cork, and has been associated with computer room air conditioning since 1968. It has extended its expertise to cover many other applications, including precision environmental control, data-hall pressurisation, HTM compliant air conditioning systems, and cinema air management. EDPAC’s innovative engineering approach has allowed the company to provide tailored solutions that meet challenging customer energy and site specific requirements. This has given the company a competitive advantage, and allowed EDPAC to become a market leader in Europe, the Americas, Middle East, and the Far East.
Detailed Stimulation Engineering Approach
To date, EDPAC has collaborated with the SEAM Technology Gateway on several data centre air handling unit (AHU) design projects involving free air cooling. Free air cooling takes advantage of low external air temperatures by mixing low temperature fresh air with internal room temperature air. Mixing these two air streams to produce an air supply with a uniform temperature profile can be particularly challenging, as external air temperatures can reach far below zero during winter. In order to evaluate the mixing performance of each AHU in line with project requirements, EDPAC approached SEAM to carry out air flow assessments using computational fluid dynamics (CFD), an engineering simulation technique for analysing fluid flow phenomena.
The use of CFD on these projects allowed EDPAC to confirm the performance of each AHU according to project requirements at the design stage. The detailed engineering simulation approach has given EDPAC additional insight into the design of AHUs for free air cooling applications involving low external air temperatures.
SEAM utilises engineering simulation and analysis to solve problems across a wide variety of industries. SEAM has expertise in structural analysis involving Finite Element Analysis (FEA), as well as CFD for the analysis of fluid flow phenomena. The application of these analysis techniques has resulted in cost reductions for SEAM’s client companies through reduction in physical prototyping, improved operating performance, and improved product lifespan.
years in business
“While low ambient locations can provide free cooling, not all free cooling is easily managed. Placing free cooling air handlers for data centres in locations where temperatures can get to -30 or -40 degrees in winter presents its own challenges. System design can be modelled utilising Computational Fluid Dynamics to predict operation under low ambient conditions. CFD modelling requires a high level of engineering understanding of the problem to be analysed along with mathematical competence. EDPAC were not only surprised but delighted to find such a high level of competence and capability on our door step through our engagement with Patrick Donnellan at SEAM. We plan to continue to work with them on critical infrastructure designs.”Noel Lynch
Managing Director, EPDAC International Ltd
The EDPAC Ltd & SEAM Technology Gateway partnership
SEAM built a computational model of each AHU, and simulated air flow under critical winter conditions. SEAM then analysed the resulting air flow patterns and temperature distributions to evaluate mixing performance, and to identify design modifications to improve mixing.