Cooling distribution aware adoption of EC fans is no longer optional

30 March, 2017

There were some great presentations and open discussions at EBM Papst’s Data Centre Energy Efficiency and Design seminar –Thank you EBM Papst! The conversations included a discussion about how much delay there is in getting the industry to move on from historic requirements – for example choosing appropriate location to sense temperature and what the temperature should be. Of course, this also applies to adopting backward curved impellers with EC motors – The case for them is overwhelming in terms of facilitating variable flow which is essential for a contained environment alone and of course they have other important benefits.

We, at Future Facilities, have been seen to say they produce airflow distribution problems but this is not meant to be a case for “don’t use EC fans”. Why? Because all fans create non-uniform flow and you need to bear this in mind in planning your deployments. EC fans are not worse from an air distribution perspective, they are just different. If you do an upgrade, you should be aware cooling is likely to be distributed differently after the upgrade compared with before.

I hope this is something the industry will take on board – I’d like to modify Ian Bitterlin’s title from 'EC fans are no longer optional' to ‘Cooling distribution aware adoption of EC fans is no longer optional”. I.e. It is hard to see when backward curved impellers with EC motors wouldn’t be a better option than centrifugal blowers but, at the same time, you do need to make sure you make good use of the cooling they provide."

By: Mark Seymour, CTO