What Types of Coolants Are Used in Liquid Cooling Data Centers?

We all know that IT equipment must avoid any contact with water to prevent short circuits. Running IT equipment generates heat, which is usually managed using fans for cooling and air conditioning. However, large data centers face a significant cooling challenge, leading to the emergence of a new type of data center known as liquid-cooled data centers.

Liquid-cooling data centers primarily use a special liquid to immerse IT equipment for cooling. This approach significantly reduces the need for cooling fans and air conditioning units, saving space and reducing the energy consumption of data centers. But what is this special liquid?

Currently, there are two main types of cooling liquids for data centers: mineral oil and fluorinated liquid.

Mineral oil is an affordable cooling liquid. It is non-toxic, odorless, non-volatile, has a high flashpoint, and very high viscosity. It tends to leave residues on the surface of equipment. Although it has a relatively high flashpoint, there is still a possibility of combustion in special environments.

Fluorinated liquid was initially used as a solution for cleaning printed circuit boards. Its insulating and non-flammable characteristics make it the most widely used and safest immersion cooling liquid for data centers. Among common cooling liquids, it is the most expensive and is frequently used in equipment that requires high levels of heat dissipation.

Currently, liquid-cooling data centers are predominantly located in large enterprises. As related industries continue to develop, there is an expectation that the price of fluorinated liquid will decrease, driving increased adoption of liquid-cooling data centers


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