Nortek Unveils World’s Most Powerful CDU for Data Center Liquid Cooling

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Nortek Air Solutions recently introduced its new CDU1200, a 1,200-kW coolant distribution unit (CDU). As the single most powerful, compact CDU on the planet, the CDU1200 is the newest addition to its ServerCool data center liquid cooling product line.

The CDU1200 is a perfect new construction or retrofit liquid cooling solution for high performance computing and enterprise data centers, as well co-location, corporate network edge, government, research and other data center formats. In an age where liquid cooling is required to support growing chip power densities, the CDU1200’s kW/ft2 capacity is unrivalled when directly compared to competitor products.

The CDU1200’s compatibility with existing ServerCool CDU’s, such as the CD6 300-kW floor mount and the CD5 50-kW rack-mount, enables modular growth of existing systems. The CDU1200’s superior pumping power also allows it to be placed outside of the white space.
The CDU1200’s highly-efficient heat exchanger technology thermally transfers primary loop cooling to the secondary loop’s liquid cooling circuit for distribution to IT rack cold plates.

The CDU1200’s small 58 (d) x 35 (w)-inch (1,475 x 900-mm) footprint supplies an industry-first 1.2-MW of cooling capacity in a density of 14.6-ft2 (1.3-m2) that helps attain optimum power usage effectiveness (PUE). The CDU1200 offers two redundant 15-hp stainless steel pumps with many energy-efficient features including electronically-commutated (EC) motors and variable frequency inverters that efficiently modulate optimum performance flow rates for the system’s 320-gpm (1,211-L/m) capacity.

System water purity is optimized with a standard 50-micron washable ultra filter/strainer and an optional ultraviolet (UV) light biological contaminant sterilization system.

The CDU1200 has an onboard programmable logic controller (PLC)-based microprocessor using custom-written, proprietary software based on ServerCool’s decades of liquid cooling control experience. The system’s full instrumentation of triple-redundant pressure transducers and temperature sensors offer unprecedented pinpoint control and monitoring of vital statistics, such as primary and secondary loop discharge/return temperatures, data hall temperature and humidity, pump PSI and many other critical parameters. Operation parameters are accessed from the CDU1200’s user-friendly, seven-inch (17-cm) color LED touchscreen HMI or a remote monitor. The unit’s control infrastructure features compatibility and plug-and-play connections with Modbus, BACnet and other building automation system (BAS) protocols.

The CDU1200 has a narrow Delta-T temperature which helps facilitate eligibility for the Green500 supercomputers list. It’s rated nominally with a 90°F (32°C) primary and a 7.2°F (4°C) approach Delta-T and exceeds 2.5-MW capacity with an approach of 14.4°F (8°C).
Nortek’s commitment to the CDU1200’s quality control and short lead times is illustrated by a newly-built state-of-the-art, dedicated production line established at Nortek Global HVAC’s world-class 350,000-square-foot (32,516-m2) Dyersburg, Tenn., manufacturing facility. The Demand Flow Technology-certified plant uses quality control and reliability processes, such as multiple checkpoints each with the unit’s CAD drawings on a computer monitor. A 100-percent computer-automated testing system prevents human error.

CDU1200 design highlights:

  • Requires less life space than a CRAC when converting a data center to higher cooling and higher density liquid cooling
  • Robotically welded, corrosion-resistant ASIS 316 stainless steel is used instead of some competitors’ plastic piping that potentially melts or leaks easily under higher pressures. Piping infrastructure is subjected to a stringent series of factory pressure and hydraulic quality control testing
  • Maintenance is minimal and requires only periodic filter/strainer checks
  • Modulating actuator valve can control dew point and prevent condensation
  • Compatible with all brands of chillers, evaporative coolers, cooling towers and other chilled water central plant formats
  • User-definable LED alarms for leak detection/prevention and performance criteria
  • Fixed flow meters on primary and secondary circuits
  • Two-year standard warranty–one of the industry’s longest
  • Optional manifolds and dripless smart connector accessories fit all cold plate piping configurations

See Nortek Air Solutions at SC19 booth #775.

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