Why Data Center Rack Strength Is More Important than Ever

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As organizations demand round-the-clock availability, high performance and greater storage capacity from their data centers, the physical infrastructure of these data centers is under increasing pressure – literally and figuratively – to support rising server and storage densities. In fact, research shows that the average power density per rack will rise to 12kW in 2014 – twice the average 6kW power density per rack in 2006. Companies are looking to squeeze more computing power into less space. Similarly, growing data storage and cooling requirements have resulted in heavier equipment. Today, many data center racks are supporting 2,800 pounds of equipment or more, compared to an average of 2,000 pounds just five years ago. Structural integrity of data center racks has taken on even greater importance as more organizations utilize offsite integration processes. Instead of installing, configuring and integrating equipment onsite, a systems integrator will “rack and stack” completely configured units, which are then delivered to the organization’s data center. In this case, the rack must be able to support the equipment’s weight and maintain its structural integrity during transit, standing up to shakes and bumps along the way. This action is similar to a seismic event that stresses both the x and y axes. The average data center rack wasn’t built to withstand this kind of trauma. Most manufacturers construct racks from formed or folded sheet metal, which provides strength vertically but not horizontally. They often employ “stitch” welding to save time, labor and material, but this technique doesn’t provide the superior sturdiness of a continuous seam weld. Consequently, these racks can be damaged during shipment when carrying heavy equipment, forcing weight-load restrictions of approximately 2,000 pounds. Inferior racks can visibly buckle and damage expensive hardware. They can also become deflected, which may not be noticeable when the rack is unpacked and moved to the data center. However, a deflection can change the space in the mounting area such that equipment is difficult to remove. DAMAC’s Fastrack is designed and manufactured to handle heavy weight loads and maintain its structural integrity during shipping.

  • Tubular steel construction provides both horizontal and vertical strength, and all seams and joints are fully welded to eliminate failure points that stitch welding can cause.
  • Fastrack can support 3,500 pounds of equipment in a fixed position, allowing for ever-increasing weight loads.
  • Fastrack will maintain the proper mounting area according to Electronic Industries Alliance (EIA) specification when shipped with up to 3,000 pounds of equipment – 50 percent more than lower-quality racks.
  • Larger casters than those used on competitive racks create more floor clearance. This makes it easier to load and unload a fully populated rack and move it on a flat or pitched surface.
  • Fastrack features a fully welded, seismic floor mounting plate built into the base. Mounting anchor points and levelers are installed outside of the mounting area, making the unit accessible when fully populated.

Let us show you how DAMAC’s Fastrack provides the strength and weight capacity to support the growing demands of today’s data centers.

Download Fastrack Whitepaper