Computational Fluid Dynamics

What is CFD?

Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) is a branch of fluid dynamics that is used to calculate airflow and temperature distribution in a given space. The value of CFD comes from creating a virtual prototype that accurately predicts the behavior of a real system. It allows engineers and managers to gain insight into problems and devise solutions at the lowest possible cost, without having to deploy directly into a production facility.

To read more on this topic:

https://www.futurefacilities.com/resources/whitepapers/computational-fluid-dynamics-monitoring/

https://www.futurefacilities.com/resources/videos/about-us/what-is-engineering-simulation-1/

Is it true that data center CFD models take a long time to solve?

The solve time is dependent on the complexity and the size of the model. We have worked on ways to accelerate solve time, including the use of unstructured mesh and HPC solving using cluster solvers.

The value of CFD cannot be understated. When making critical decisions on your data center power and cooling infrastructure, CFD simulation can provide you with answers that you can make sound decisions on. The trade-off on the solve time is far less impactful compared to making the wrong decision.

Software & Services

What products do you offer?

For engineering consultants and designers, we recommend 6SigmaRoom, the industry’s leading data center CFD simulation software, or 6SigmaRoomLite, the ideal entry-level tool for early data center design. 

For companies that supply equipment such as racks, power and cooling units to data centers, we recommend a combination of 6SigmaRack and 6SigmaRoom.
For data center owner-operators, we suggest implementing the entire digital twin platform comprising of 6SigmaAccess, 6SigmaRoom and 6SigmaGateway

Do you integrate with other tools?

Yes, 6SigmaRoom can integrate with various tool sets such as DCIM, SNMP, Spreadsheets, MATLAB and C++. Contact us to learn more about our current integrations.

 

 

Do you have a monitoring solution?

We do not provide any hardware for monitoring temperature, power or other metrics in a data center. However, we can integrate with a system that does collect this type of data. Please see our module page or contact us to learn about our current integrations.

How do I get started with the software?

There are various ways to get started with the software. You can employ our consulting services to build the digital twin for you or take our training classes to learn how to build the model on your own.

Do you offer consulting services?

Yes. Depending on your project needs and budget, we offer tiered consulting services. To learn more about our delivery, please see our services page.

Do you have short-term/project-based licensing?

Yes, we offer various licensing options, including short-term, yearly and perpetual license options. Please contact our sales team for more information. 

Do you offer software trials?

Yes, we offer a 30-day free trial for 6SigmaRoom. However, if you are looking to bring in our software for operations, please contact our sales team for more details on how this trial can work for you. 

Is 6SigmaRoom difficult to learn?

You do not need any prior experience in CFD to get started with 6SigmaRoom. 6SigmaRoom is designed to effortlessly tackle the most difficult modeling problems in data centers. It has been designed from the ground up to address the needs of engineers with the help of an intuitive GUI, extensive hardware libraries and intelligent modeling objects. 

Is your software 3D?

Yes, the digital twin is 3D in nature. To see more, explore our videos here.

What if my company does not have thermal engineers on staff to run your software?

The use of our software does not require any experience in CFD to operate. However, in cases where you do not have the expertise or time to manage the model, we can provide the required support. We also have several partners that can provide the modeling support you require. 

How do you ensure the model is accurate?

We verify the numerics of the software on a continuous basis. This is done at both the modeling and solver level. 

You can read more about this here: https://www.futurefacilities.com/resources/whitepapers/how-accurate-is-6sigmadcx/

CFD models can get out of date very quickly. How do you keep the models up to date?

If you have an existing DCIM solution, we can bring in asset and live data through 6SigmaGateway. This operation is performed in 6SigmaRoom. Additionally, we can also send back temperature and cooling data to your DCIM solution to enhance the planning process. 

If you do not have a DCIM solution, you can use 6SigmaAccess, a browser-based planning software, to update the model. 

Does 6SigmaRoom only work well for design?

6SigmaRoom can be employed across the entire life of the data center—from design to operations. In data center operations, 6SigmaRoom can be used with another DCIM solution or with our planning software 6SigmaAccess.

How much does the software cost?

We have several pricing options to help fit your requirements. You can contact our sales team to request more information. 

What is the payback period for the software?

It depends on the type and scope of the project that the software is used for. Typically, we see that most of our customers start to see return on investment in three to six months. 
The value of simulation is that it can predict the impact of any change you may want to make to a new or existing design. Implementing CFD simulation early in the process can prevent expensive changes in the actual facility down the road. 

Can I deploy your solution on a cloud infrastructure such as AWS, AZURE or GCP?

We mainly provide on-premise solutions that run behind a company’s firewall. However, with our new architecture, we can deploy the central database on the cloud and have our client and server connect to this database. For more details, please contact our sales team.

Can you solve the models on the cloud?

Yes, we have a partnership with Rescale (www.rescale.com) that allows you to solve your models using Rescale’s on-demand, powerful hardware.

Learn more here: 
https://blog.rescale.com/rescale-saves-h-f-lenz-company-days-of-compute-time/

Can I solve the models on the cluster?

Yes, we have Windows and Linux (LSF) based cluster solver options. 

Is your solution tailor-made for Enterprise Data Centers only?

 The digital twin’s utility spans across the entire data center supply chain—from designers to operators, including all types of data centers (enterprise, co-lo and hyperscale). Every owner-operator faces space, power and cooling issues regardless of the “type” of data center. 

Is your software web-based?

Yes! 6SigmaAccess is our browser-based, capacity planning software that allows IT hardware planners to make IT changes and pass those changes to the 6SigmaRoom models. To learn more about our operational software, please visit: 

https://www.futurefacilities.com/products/6sigmaroom/

Company

Where are your sales and support offices located?

We have three main offices, with locations in the US, Japan and our HQ in the UK. We also have several channel partners/distributors around the world. Please see our locations here.

Does Future Facilities work with universities and other industry organizations?

Yes, we are part of the NSF-ES2, which brings together industry experts and people from academia to further research in cooling for data centers.
Additionally, we also work with ASHRAE and The Green Grid to help drive standards in CFD modeling. 

How We're Different

We already have a DCIM solution, how can you add value to our current operations?

DCIM solutions are extremely valuable as they address the need to consolidate information, such as assets, tickets and live data, into a single platform. However, DCIM tools lack the ability to model or simulate the behavior of the data center, which is critical for capacity planning. 

How are you different from other Data Center CFD Tools in the market?

Future Facilities’ core technology is built on a CFD engine. However, unlike other companies, we have a suite of products that we have developed for the entire data center supply chain. 

We track all the necessary data, such as temperature and power. Why do we need your solution to help us?

Tracking power and data is important in data center operations. However, monitoring will only tell you what is currently happening in the data center, but not why it is happening. Simulation can identify the root cause of an issue and allow you to plan for the future state of your data center. 
https://www.futurefacilities.com/resources/whitepapers/computational-fluid-dynamics-monitoring/

We monitor temperature and power; can we bring that data into your model?

Yes, you can easily integrate your data with 6SigmaRoom. Please see our complete list of integrations here

Can I use your software for capacity planning?

Yes. The core idea of a digital twin is that it can help predict the outcome of any change. Engineering simulation allows you to forecast layout, power and cooling needs for your facility. 

To read more about this topic: https://www.futurefacilities.com/blog/is-successful-capacity-planning-virtually-impossible/

Can I use your software for energy efficiency?

Yes! 6SigmaRoom can model the impact of increasing air temperatures in your data center without having to put any of your IT equipment at risk. The data center digital twin allows you to safely consider the effect of altering any parameter in the facility in a virtual environment. 

You can read the case study that details Citi’s use of the digital twin to increase its energy efficiency here.

Can your software map out the power network in the data center?

6SigmaPower is a module within 6SigmaRoom that allows you to map out the entire power network of your data center. You can visualize power usage, breaker overloads and run power failure scenarios.

Learn more here: https://www.futurefacilities.com/resources/videos/products/the-power-module/

My data center has Cooling Units with VFD. Can your software model that?

6SigmaRoom has several features that can be used to replicate VFDs in data centers. You can set up control systems for individual cooling units or for many clusters of units. To learn more, please contact us and schedule a demo at info@futurefacilities.com and we’ll be more than happy to illustrate how this works. 

Can you analyze cooling and power failure?

Yes—a cooling failure in data centers is a transient phenomenon, where we can simulate the loss of cooling (airflow, heat exchange or both) and calculate how quickly the equipment temperatures in the data center rise. 

To read more on these topics, please follow the link below: 
https://www.futurefacilities.com/blog/expecting-the-unexpected-analyzing-a-cooling-failure/

Do you have case studies that I can read through?

Yes! You can find our case studies here: 
https://www.futurefacilities.com/resources/case-studies/

We don’t have any thermal issues in our data center. Why do I still need your solution?

The concept of the digital twin can be extended beyond thermal management issues. Even if you don’t have thermal issues, it is a good practice to safeguard your data center from future issues by quantifying the impact of changes. Our line of products can also be used for energy savings or external airflow design.

You can read more about how CitiGroup used 6SigmaRoom to save energy here: 
https://www.futurefacilities.com/resources/case-studies/

Can I talk to some of your customers on how they are using the software?

Yes! Please contact us here and we would be more than happy to make the introduction.