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Understanding types of containment | Legrand United Kingdom

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Understanding types of containment

Data center terminology can sometimes be challenging to understand, especially when discussing types of containment solutions. This page will outline the two main containment types (also known as corridors) and provide a high-level overview of the benefits and capabilities of each.

Cold Containment 

Cold Containment 

A cold containment or cold corridor is a solution in which the roof is in a horizontal position; hence also known as horizontal containment. 
The roof is either laid on the racks or is independent of them (free-standing corridor). 
In a cold corridor, cold air will flow through a raised floor into the corridor, containing the cold air in front of the servers and cooling. them down as the air flows to the rest of the room. 

Hot Containment

Hot Containment

A hot containment or hot corridor is a solution in which the roof is in a vertical position; hence also known as vertical containment. 
The roof is either supported by the racks or is independent of them (free-standing corridor). 
In a hot corridor, the room is cooled, and the front of the servers will be on the external side of the corridor meeting this cold air. The cold air will flow towards the inside of the aisle, cooling down the IT equipment and being accumulated as hot air inside the corridor and expelled through a false ceiling. 

How do they compare?
Cold containment Hot containment
Room at a high temperature > 35 degrees  Room at a comfortable temperature ~ 25 degrees 
Aisle at 22-25 degrees  Aisle above 40 degrees 
  Stand-alone equipment can be cooled without being part of the containment (e.g., UPS) 
Cable entry points not a problem  Cable entry points or cutouts in the containment are a point of attention. Hot air can leak towards the room 
  Optimizes performance of row-based coolers (if in use) thanks to the higher gradient of temperature between aisle and room 
Commonly easier to retrofit to existing data centers thanks to its horizontal approach  
Commonly requires of a raised floor to deliver cold air to the aisle Commonly requires of a false ceiling to get rid of the hot air accumulated in the aisle. 


Doubting which containment to choose?