Intel Experiments with Oil Immersion Cooling Technology

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mrclean816

I'd like to know if it works. I don't see the point in posting this article until we have more information. Seems like a waste of my time. Don't do it.

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Refuge88

I have REALLY been toying with the thought of submerging a custom system in Oil, Taking it out and changing parts would be a bit of a hassle to say the least. But nothing too difficult, and it would make up for it with the no longer having to clean it bi-monthly of dust/lint.

Plus the awesome lighting effects I could achieve with that... Mmmmm... Exciting prospects!

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Strangelove_424

I once saw the A/C fail in a server room and it was an epic disaster. Temperatures on a lot of hardware exceeded boiling point. Wires were melting, multiple hard drives failed, and the scorching hot room was filled with the odor of burnt plastics. At that point everyone started to freak out about the sprinkler system turning on, and rushed to deactivate it. Kinda fun actually, atleast compared to actually working. Server heat ain't nothin' to mess with though.

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NavarWynn

BTDT. We ended up running down to Home Depot, and buying five of the 'portable' AC units (freestanding units), and ducting them all into the server room... Kind of ghetto looking, but it worked for the holiday weekend... Of course ours were setup up to thermally cut off before damage was done, so we were at a stand still otherwise...

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MrHasselblad

Uummm, hate to state this but...

For most any building built since about 1997; and also "almost" any commercial and/or office space that has an occupancy permit is required by law to have sprinklers that activate at well below 190f. The only alternatives go off well before that temp.

Btw that's at ceiling height, and given the fact that heat always rises.

Plus did I mention that sprinklers keep their pressure - unless both turned off at valve and then ultra-cautiously slowly drained of pressure.

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Strangelove_424

Just to be clear I said the components reached 100C, not the room. It felt like a desert inside, probably 100-120f (38-48C), but not anything close to 190f. I've taken my i7 past 85C and the ambient temp sensor inside the top of my case maxed out at 38C. This is an FT02 with a vertical convection design. There are limitations to air's ability to conduct heat, and convection to drive the heat up.

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SirFrag

While I think he's exaggerating a bit (wires melting? That's poor design.) sprinklers in a properly designed computer room are either not charged (empty pipe) or foam charged (non-conducting) to protect equipment.

Now, I will say that in our computer room (roughly 10 physical servers and all the supporting gear) when our A/C has failed in the past, you'll see temps jump 30 degrees within 45 minutes. (65 up to 95). However, we have a 4 hour SLA for A/C repairs and smaller backup units. The room is maintainable for short times at temps of 95f.

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Strangelove_424

Maybe "epic disaster" was hyperbolic, but the IT guys did replace multiple cables due to warped connectors and melted sleeves near the I/O. A "properly designed computer room" is the key terminology here. There were many other problems at this place, sprinkler systems notwithstanding. Authoring commercial entertainment content on unlicensed copies of Adobe/Autodesk software is crazy too, and obviously illegal, but that didn’t stop them either. Big companies and proper standards are not always mutually inclusive. Either way, it was an interesting event and quite indicative to me of the increased heat dissipation demands of a server.

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Hey.That_Dude

That would take some major engineering.
they would basicly need to do their servers like the AMD micro servers.

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Blaze589

It could work if you redesign a server room into something a kin to an aquarium, then put in the components and flood it with oil. You'll of course need robots and/or divers to swap out broken and/or obsolete components. Just a thought...

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SirFrag

Actually, I've seen pictures of what you might think of as racks on their sides and resemble large fish tanks to hold and circulate the oil. The oil is filtered and pumped through heat exchangers similar to a car's radiator.

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Strangelove_424

IT guys in scuba gear. That's a keeper. I was thinking of sealed racks that could circulate the oil into a radiator/filter, but your idea sounds like a lot more fun. It reminds me of the HAL death scene.

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Hey.That_Dude

that's a lot of wasted oil. Just having one human have enough room in front of each and every component...

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jaygregz

I imagine aquariums with drain racks hooked up to a rail system so that you can bring the submerged systems to the top and all the oils would drip down back into the aquarium.

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devin3627

actually with what i saw, the ram board lifts out and you swab the circuits with alcohol. how would an oily product and a warranty go together? hmm.

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SirFrag

Well, if this article is any indication, Intel may be on the track of selling hardware designed for this, and if that's the case it would be warrantied.

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sweb74

upgrading the ram would just plain suck!

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gothliciouz

sounds too messy

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jaygregz

Sounds less messy than a hot box filled with dust and lent.

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