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Nortek announces ‘world’s most powerful’ compact coolant distribution unit

Nortek has announced a new coolant distribution unit (CDU) for data centres that want to take advantage of liquid cooling, with the new model supposedly the single most powerful, compact CDU on the planet. 

Dubbed the CDU1200, this 1,200kW CDU forms part of Nortek’s ServerCool product line, and boasts highly-efficient heat exchanger technology which thermally transfers primary loop cooling to the secondary loop’s liquid cooling circuit for distribution to IT rack cold plates.

The CDU1200 offers two redundant 15-hp stainless steel pumps and includes 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 optimised 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 proprietary software. The system’s full instrumentation of triple-redundant pressure transducers and temperature sensors offer 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 7in colour 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 protocols.

The CDU1200 has a narrow Delta-T temperature which helps facilitate eligibility for the Green500 supercomputers list. It’s rated nominally with a 32°C primary and a 4°C approach Delta-T and exceeds 2.5-MW capacity with an approach of 8°C.

The CDU1200 design also includes:

  • Requires less life space than a CRAC when converting a data centre 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;
  • Optional manifolds and dripless smart connector accessories fit all cold plate piping configurations.
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