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Enhancing fan efficiency to lower power and improve acoustics
Keywords: fan, efficiency, acoustics
The topic of this talk is fan efficiency. .... First, I will define what efficiency means in terms of total power to an electronic device and will compare specific air mover type efficiencies relative to electronics cooling. The energy consumed by air movers can be expressed as a percent of total heat rejection. Each end use is different and the extremes range from Telecommunication Routers to Low Impedance servers. Therefore, fan efficiency impact varies depending on end use. .... Second, I will discuss the composition of fan total efficiency as well as the differences between each fan type including axial fans (AF), counter-rotating axial fans (CRAF), backward inclined centrifugal fans (BI) and forward curved centrifugal fans (FC). I will discuss how the perceptions of efficiency for a specific air mover type can easily vary from reality when that air mover is applied. I will highlight what represents state of the art efficiency as well as where power consumption stands for most commodity designs. Further, I will highlight how a highly efficient fan or blower can be misapplied and how that can negatively impact its performance. .... Third, will be a description and quantification of several unique things that can be done to improve efficiency, specifically, but not exclusively, for FC blowers when compared to either AF fans or BI blowers. Further, a short discussion on scaling (larger and smaller) will be covered. Air mover packaging will be part of this portion of the talk. .... Finally, the presentation will cover the importance that efficiency has on acoustics. There are two acoustic issues. One is the impact of comparative efficiencies between fans and the other is noise generation in “off-peak” situations. The general topic of fan acoustics will be part of this last section.
Roger Dickinson,
Bergquist Torrington Company
Torrington, CT

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