Power and Cooling

The power and cooling figures shown are estimates and should be used to get a general idea of the power and cooling requirements of your new system. Measurements should be taken upon arrival of your new system under peak load with your desired application. Feel free to contact us if you need technical assistance in facilities planning.


Plug Types

National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) plugs and receptacles are commonly used in North America, and use designators such as "NEMA L6-30R" to identify receptacle and plug types. The "R" stands for receptacle, which is the receptacle you provide at your facility to plug your cluster into, while "P" stands for plug.

The most common plug/receptacle types you will encounter in North America are;

120v - 15a to 30a

  • NEMA 5-15r (120v 15a standard office wall plug)
  • NEMA 5-20r (120v 20a circuit installed in some more modern facilities)
  • NEMA L5-20r (120v 20a twist lock receptacle)
  • NEMA L5-30R (120v 30a twist lock receptacle)

208v - 20a to 50a

  • NEMA L6-20R (208v 20a twist lock)
  • NEMA L6-30R (208v 30a twist lock)
  • NEMA L14-30R (208v 30a twist lock 4-Wire Grounding)
  • CS6364 (208v 50a twist lock "California Style" 4-wire Grounding)

The CS6364 receptacle and plug combination is not a NEMA designation, but is becoming more common as power needs grow. There are many other types of electrical receptacles and plugs. For instance, the back of most nodes are equipped with International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) C14 chassis plugs, while the power cords connecting the node to its PDU are normally C13 line socket to NEMA 5-15P.

You may need to consult with your electrical personnel at your facility to determine exactly what receptacles you have or can support. In all cases, speak with your sales engineer if you are confused about your options or what type of receptacles your current facility has.


Modern systems today are more powerful than ever before. The amount of processing power, memory, and the interconnect options available in a single system today far exceed anything available even 2 or 3 years ago. However, that additional processing power comes with a price, more power usage. In electronics, power is transformed into heat. More power usage means more heat to dissipate. As we pack more and more performance into smaller packages, which we then rack as tightly as possible to take advantage of all available space, cooling becomes critical. Inadequate cooling is the primary cause of hardware failures.

The optimum ambient temperature for your system/cluster is 68° to 77°F (Fahrenheit) (20°to 25°Celsius). Maximum ambient temperature should not exceed 80.6°F (27° Celsius) for any length of time. While your cluster can be operated in environments with above maximum ambient temperatures if necessary, doing so will adversely affect your application(s) performance and your system(s) long term hardware reliability. UPS batteries are especially sensitive to higher temperature environments. A UPS battery deployed in a 90°F ambient temperature environment might only last 1 to 2 years, versus the 3 to 5 year normal battery lifetime. System memory and disk drives also will fail significantly sooner than normal in higher temperature environments.

To figure out which size unit is best for your cooling needs:

1. Determine the square footage of the area to be cooled

  • 400-600 square foot needs 12,000 BTU/h (1 ton) of cooling

2. Determine your heat load

  • Multiply your wattage by 3.413 to convert to BTU/h.
  • 16363(w) x 3.413 = 55847 (BTU/H)
  • 55847 (BTU/H) / 12000 = 4.65 tons of cooling

3. Make any adjustments for the following circumstances:

  • If the room is heavily shaded, reduce capacity by 10 percent.
  • If the room is very sunny, increase capacity by 10 percent.
  • If more than two people regularly occupy the room, add 600-1000 BTUs for each additional person.
  • Consider where you install the unit. If you are mounting an air conditioner near the corner of a room, look for a unit that can send the airflow in the right direction.

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