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An introduction to Monitoring Fundamentals strictly from the perspective of telecom network alarm management.

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Data center cooling strategies and monitoring systems

The increase in telecommunications traffic in the last few years has been tremendous. It's being driven especially by the increasing demand for internet video streaming.

Cooling is your biggest energy draw in most climates.

Recent studies have found that (unsurprisingly) over 80% of the power consumed at telecom sites is used for network infrastructure. The majority of that power is used for your cooling system (HVAC).

TempDefender Room
Look for a system that can monitor equipment and multiple environmentals for complete site visibility.

How to reduce your cooling-system energy use.

Fortunately, there are clever techniques you can use to reduce the amount of electricity you consume for cooling your data center:

  1. Building/Enclosure Color:
    Darker colors absorb more solar energy. Choose the lightest and most reflective surfaces you can for your buildings. The reduction in heat load reduces your need for active cooling.
  2. Passive / "Free Air" Systems:
    If it's cooler outside than it is in your data center, you can use it as a "free" source of cooling. The only energy consumed is for fans to stimulate the air exchange. This uses only a tiny fraction of an equivalent HVAC system. Look for a system with a smart controller that will react to the differential between inside and outside temperatures. Any free-air system should also track humidity - a risk that comes with using outside air.
  3. Dual-Zone Cooling: When possible, split larger sites into two different temperature zones. Maybe your batteries need to be kept in a tight temperature band, but your other gear is more forgiving. If you reduce your cooling where it isn't required, you can save energy.

Whatever your cooling strategy, you need remote monitoring.

No matter how efficient or inefficient your cooling system is, you have to know that it's working. Any outage opens up the risks of overheating: thermal shutdowns & equipment damage. You'll increase your costs as you shut down your revenue.

Considering the costly dangers of unseen HVAC failures on your budget, there's no excuse for not monitoring. Compared to the cost of an outage, it's a no-brainer purchase decision.

Recommended HVAC monitoring devices.

The TempDefender

The TempDefender G2 monitors environmentals

The TempDefender G2 keeps tabs on all the environmental levels that could have a damaging effect on your equipment. The 8 discrete alarms on the back panel of the TempDefender monitor your dry contacts, such as motion sensors, UPS, smoke detectors, flood sensors, AC and room entry. The 4 D-wire sensor inputs on the back panel allow you to monitor up to 32 analog sensors, giving you the analog capacity to keep on top of environmental conditions at your site.

HVAC Interface

HVAC Interface

If you're looking for equipment that can work in conjunction with your network monitoring to cycle and monitor HVAC functions, then the HVAC Interface from DPS Telecom is right for you. This device was designed to work with the NetGuardian 832A G5 equipped with 4 temperature sensors and the special HVAC software designed for the device.

D-Wire Sensors

D-Wire Sensors for environmental monitoring

D-Wire sensors are a way to track environmentals in your server room, telecom shelter, PBX closet, or data center using convenient daisy-chained sensors. You will be alerted the second your temperature gets too high or the humidity level in your site reaches an unacceptable level.With D-Wire sensors, you don't have to worry about analog capacity on your RTUs, tangled masses of sensors at your RTU, or even the trouble of wiring analog connectors.