STULZ Air Technology Systems Publishes White Paper Reviewing the Federal Regulations that Affect the Selection of Comfort vs Precision Cooling for Computer Rooms

Share Article

Specifying or installing the wrong HVAC equipment can be costly in both lost energy efficiency and potential fines for non-compliance

News Image
“With this white paper, it is our hope that we can provide a very useful resource for engineers and contractors designing computer room spaces of all sizes”

Leading mission critical cooling manufacturer STULZ Air Technology Systems, Inc. (STULZ USA) today announced the publication of a new white paper titled “Regulations Determining Computer Room Cooling Selection - Precision vs Comfort Cooling.” This white paper is intended to assist engineers and contractors who are designing data centers and small IT spaces by providing a history of the various requirements for computer room cooling, along with a detailed overview of the most recent federal regulations.

“There is no shortage of misinformation defining the appropriate use of air conditioning equipment for computer room applications,” said Dave Meadows, the Director of Industry, Standards, and Technology at STULZ and the white paper’s author. “The regulatory landscape has changed significantly over the past few years, and we hope to make sense of it all for the engineers and contractors who are facing increasing concern about correctly applying HVAC equipment to computer rooms.”

Prior to 2010 there was no minimum required energy efficiency for computer room cooling equipment in the United States. But with data centers estimated to consume over 3% of the total US power output, the US Department of Energy (D.O.E.) has sought to reduce power usage, and compel the industry to comply with guidelines from the American Society of Refrigeration Engineers (ASHRAE). Today, federal regulations require computer room cooling equipment to meet a minimum Sensible Coefficient of Performance (SCOP) while similar municipal and state conservation codes are continuously evolving.

“These are fast changing requirements and many engineers and end users are inadvertently misapplying comfort cooling units in computer rooms simply because they are not aware of the benefits of application specific units or the regulatory aspects of the application,” continued Mr. Meadows. “CRAC manufacturers have dedicated thousands of hours of research and development in an effort to create the most energy efficient equipment for this particular application. Comfort cooling equipment has neither the tight control, robust design, nor the built in energy efficiency required to serve the computer room adequately. Specifying or installing the wrong equipment can be costly in both lost energy efficiency and potential fines for non-compliance.”

To date, the Department of Energy (D.O.E.) has not exempted any state from this energy efficiency standard.

According to the white paper, a major impact of the D.O.E.’s decision to add computer room air conditioners to its list of federally regulated appliances is the classification of “computer rooms." Among other things, a computer room is defined as any room which has a design electronic data equipment power density exceeding 20 watts per square foot of conditioned floor space. This low threshold has resulted in relatively small IT spaces and office server rooms being subject to minimum SCOP requirements for HVAC equipment.

“With this white paper, it is our hope that we can provide a very useful resource for engineers and contractors designing computer room spaces of all sizes,” concluded Mr. Meadows. “While it is not a replacement for studying the applicable federal, state, and local building codes, I believe most readers will find it helpful and informative.”

The complete white paper can be downloaded from the STULZ USA website at
Those interested in keeping up with the latest news and developments from STULZ USA can follow @STULZ_USA on Twitter, become a part of the of STULZ USA circle on Google+, and visit STULZ USA Company profile on LinkedIn. Videos will be updated regularly on the STULZ USA YouTube page. All company news and information will continue to be available at

About STULZ Air Technology Systems, Inc.
STULZ Air Technology Systems, Inc. (STULZ USA) is an ISO 9001 registered manufacturer of environmental control equipment, including a full line of energy efficient precision air conditioners, air handling units, ultrasonic humidifiers, and desiccant dehumidifiers. The company is responsible for product development, manufacturing, and distribution for the North American arm of the international STULZ Group. For more information about STULZ USA and its products, call 301-620-2033. E-mail your request to or visit

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Aaron Sabino
Stulz ATS
+1 240-529-1206
Email >
Visit website