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Thermal Management In Telecommunications Central Offices: Thermal GR-3028

Document Number GR-3028
Issue Number 01
Issue Date Dec 2001

    ABSTRACT: The surge for communications and data processing equipment is driven by the demand for new and improved voice, data, and video services. To meet this demand, service providers are installing a vast amount of non-traditional equipment with more heat output and larger footprint. This equipment at many times looks and functions like computers. Since this equipment often is not designed for the telecommunications environment (which is significantly different from computer rooms), the existing environmental systems may not be suitable. Furthermore, the non-traditional equipment comes from a wide range of manufacturers that may be less familiar with the environmental constraints in telecommunications facilities.

    Inadequate matching between environmental design and modern telecommunications equipment has the potential to jeopardize multimillion-dollar investments in sophisticated electronic equipment and to interrupt a vast amount of revenue-generating services. As the heat dissipation from telecommunications equipment continues to soar (per unit volume) due to miniaturization and higher clock speeds, service providers and equipment manufacturers find it increasingly challenging to provide adequate equipment cooling.

    Energy consumption of telecommunications equipment, internet-related computers, and networking devices has increased sharply over the past years. Energy consumption by telecommunications gear currently accounts for 60% to 80% of the total energy consumed in central offices (Telcordia, 1994). Most of this energy is subsequently released as heat to the surrounding equipment space. Since most of the remaining central office energy use goes to cool the equipment room, the economic impact of making the electronic equipment energy-efficient would be considerable for companies that use and operate telecommunications equipment. In addition, capital costs for support systems would be reduced and thermal conditions in the equipment room would improve.

    Measures to accommodate high heat release equipment in telecommunications rooms will play a central role in tomorrow's thermal management. Generic supplemental/spot cooling techniques as well as turnkey cooling solutions developed by the equipment manufacturers are viable solutions. Such solutions could allow very high heat release equipment to be housed in a central office that has a heat density at or near the cooling capacity available from the central air-handler.

    GR-3028 is a requirements document for thermal management in telecommunications central offices. It provides NEBS (Network Equipment-Building System)-related thermal management information, guidelines, targets, Objectives, and Requirements for equipment manufacturers and service providers for ensuring network integrity while leaving room for innovative equipment designs and environmental solutions.

    GR-3028 classifies and reports relevant attributes of both the electronic equipment and the equipment room so that manufacturers understand the various environments in which the equipment will be deployed, and so that the service providers understand the equipment attributes for successful deployment of new telecommunications systems.

    When using GR-3028, you may need to refer to GR-63. You may also want to refer to GR-26 and/or GR-43.

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