Cool mist humidification, otherwise known as adiabatic humidification, is a process that does not require the use of a heating element to heat up water inside the humidifier. Humidification can occur by use of a fan or small metal diaphragm that vibrates at a certain frequency. These two separate processes can be broken into evaporative and ultrasonic humidification.
These types of humidifiers uses a fan to blow dry room temperature air through an evaporative wick filter. Unlike the isothermal process (warm mist), this process does not use any heating element. Therefore, it requires very little electricity to run. However, maintenance of the humidifier is required and replacing the filters is needed to keep the system working at it’s best.
Another form of cool mist humidification, ultrasonic humidifiers uses a small meta diaphragm to vibrate water at a frequency that breaks it from tiny water droplets into fine vapor mist. These systems are the most quiet, and uses the least amount of electricity. These systems may also disperse minerals that take a form of “white dust”. Although not harmful, these minerals may damage the systems and it’s surrounding environment. However, the use of distilled water is recommended to ensure no particles are to be found in the mist.
To learn about what type of water to use for these systems, check out our article explaining it at “The Quick and Easy Basics of Ultrasonic Humidification and RO/DI Water.”
Why This is Beneficial for Data Centers?
Data center humidification maintenance requires the use of systems that will keep the environment clean, free of dust, and running with minimals risks of damage. The water vapor contained in the cool mist ensures that the IT equipment is free from damaging effects such as static electric discharge, white dust formation, and overheating.
Humidity control in data centers is extremely crucial for the maintenance of the equipment and servers. Air containing too much or too little water vapor will directly impact the machine productivity and downtime. However, using a humidification system that can accurately control the room’s relative humidity (RH) can keep the electronic lasting longer and free of damage.
Advantages of Data Center Humidification
1. Health: The use of RO/DI water in ultrasonic humidification will get rid of all particles in the water to protect from white dust formation. As opposed to steam systems, cool mist humidification does not emit any particles (as long as the water is pure and/or distilled).
2. Energy Cost: Save thousands of dollars in annual operating costs with cool mist humidification. In addition, the ultrasonic system powers on and off almost instantly, as opposed to the preheat process that steam humidifiers go through.
3. Maintenance: Due to water being purified before use with ultrasonic humidifiers, there is considerably less maintenance for the system, thus reducing cost and time spent looking over the machine.
4. RH Accuracy: As soon as the data center reaches the set RH, the humidification system will instantly turn off. However, once the air strays from the set point, the humidifier will instantly turn back on.
Minimize Factors EXTERNAL to the environment.
Protect the IT environment by minimizing infiltration from chronic humidity control problems from outside weather changes. This is done by using vapor barriers in the construction or renovation of data centers with special non-porous sheets that are applied to the walls, ceilings and floor of the room. This surrounds the entire IT environment and greatly reduces the chance of humidity loss or gain from outside of the room.
With fewer people working in data centers than most spaces, the quantity of outside air used for ventilation is normally much smaller and should be planned for by a cooling professional during the design and build of the room. The benefit is that the air coming from outdoors is already processed by the general building climate control before it even enters the computer room, ensuring that all air and humidity is controlled to accommodate the server rooms.
Minimize Factors INTERNAL to the environment.
Humidifiers that are installed in almost all data centers have one role: to protect the room and data systems from any damages/effects that can be caused by unbalanced RH. However, not all risks and damages can be 100% avoided. Continual maintenance of the system and server room is required to protect against electrostatic discharge, which if left unattended, can severely damage the equipment. To minimize damages, here are a few quick steps to incorporate into your maintenance procedure of the server room.
1. Keep doors closed at all times. Long exposures to outside air will drastically affect the room’s RH, and continual actions will increase the chance of damages to the internal environment where the humidification system is located at.
2. Use electrostatic-free mats on the ground of the data center. This will ensure that electrostatic discharge in the server room does not reach a highly damaging level that can also destroy the equipment inside the data center.
3. Establish and maintain a regular cleaning schedule. There needs to be a regular cleaning schedule for the equipments inside the server room. Once the schedule is established, it is time to follow it through. Regularly cleaning the equipment and systems will assure that the equipment will last longer.
To learn more tips on how to minimize internal factors, read about them at our “7 Tips to Control Threats of Data Center Contamination“.
Four Data Center Dangers that Cool Mist Humidification Protects Against
Cool mist humidification is extremely important for data centers and server rooms. Although there are data centers that may use isothermal humidification, the biggest benefit between that and cool mist is the energy required. As the server room gets larger, so does the energy required to keep the entire area at a healthy RH. Ultrasonic humidification requires only 10% of the total energy that the steam process takes, so when it comes to cost-savings, ultrasonic takes the cake.
If your data center and/or server room requires the use of humidification to maintain a constant RH, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or submit a contact form so we can answer your questions. At UltraPure Systems, our systems provide the best solution to save time on installation, electricity used, and system maintenance. Let us know your situation and we can help find the best system to fit your needs.