Geist Switch Air Box

SwitchAirBox - Highly efficient cooling for network equipment in cabinets

Since 2008 The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) expanded their recommended environmental envelope temperature range for IT equipment intake between 18 and 27 degrees Celsius to save energy and add additional cooling options in data centres. Any additional degree Celsius above the starting temperature reduces cooling unit loads by approximately three percent. This translates directly to the possible energy savings.

In the past: Cold aisle containment and sealed free U spaces in cabinets represent heat pitfalls for network switches

Improving cooling efficiency of the servers is a source of dramatic energy consumption reduction with relatively little effort. There is a catch – due to increasing supply air temperatures the number of failures and packet losses from network switches and routers is significantly raised. The increased packet loss is caused when best practices like cold aisle containment, blanking panels and rack side baffles are implemented. Servers and other network equipment that pulls air from the front of the rack do not have problems as they pull air from the cold aisle. Network switches and routers that pull
air from the side are pulling heated exhaust air from the servers, which is often in excess of 35 to 40 degrees Celsius. These devices have no way to access the cool air from the cold aisle and tend to overhead causing packet loss and communication failures. To solve this problem, conventionally expensive side cooling units for the cabinets were implemented. The alternative is to use the SwitchAirBox, which represents a pure mechanical and very cost-effective solution to redirect the cooling airflow.

Today: Lateral cooling of network equipment in the cabinets with the SwitchAirBox maintains all cooling optimisation
functions and benefits

The SwitchAirBox consists of a metal chassis, which supports all current 1U and 2U network switches with side air intake fans and can be easily mounted at any standard cabinet. The chassis of the SwitchAirBox transports the cooled air from the front of the rack and transports it through a side channel (can be configured for left and right side intakes) to the network equipment. On its way to the switch, the cooled air is redirected by 90 degrees in the channel, so that it can be absorbed in a perfect angle from the lateral fans of the switch. For the dissipation of the discharged exhaust air there are openings in the middle of the SwitchAirBox chassis that transports the air directly into the hot aisle. This allows all 1U and 2U network equipment to be optimally supplied with cooled air and protected your network against packet losses caused by overheating. In this way the SwitchAirBox contributes to keep the function and benefits of cold aisle containment and the cooling efficiency advantages when sealing the free U spaces in cabinets with blanking panels, too. For cabinet environments with insufficient passive cooling airflow there is also an active 2U version of the SwitchAirBox with an airflow rate of 1.36 CMM (Cubic Meter per Minute) available.