Nor-Tech Introduces Quiet, Low-Noise Clusters

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One of the primary roadblocks to upgrading from a workstation to a cluster until now has been noise. Nor-Tech has solved this problem by introducing a low-noise cluster cabinet that makes the sound almost imperceptible.

Nor-Tech President and CEO David Bollig

Nor-Tech President and CEO David Bollig

Our noise-reducing cabinet allows the cluster to function alongside other typical office equipment without being segregated into a datacenter. While the benefits of this are enormous, the cost differential is not.

Because of cost-effective power delivery and leading-edge design, organizations of all sizes can take advantage of the significant benefits of Nor-Tech’s quiet office clusters. These clusters are so quiet that most people would have to put their ear right on the cabinet to hear the cluster running.

One of the primary roadblocks to upgrading from a workstation to a cluster until now has been noise. The noise isn’t an issue for larger companies that typically have a dedicated server room, but for any organization that needs to place the cluster in the office environment, noise is a factor.

Nor-Tech has solved this problem by introducing a low-noise cluster cabinet that makes the sound almost imperceptible. Great candidates for this solution are:

  •     Engineering groups that need to speed up simulation, modeling processing by upgrading from a workstation to a cluster, but have no datacenter to locate the cluster in.
  •     Businesses that have a datacenter, but need a mobile, versatile cluster that can be shared outside the datacenter.

Nor-Tech’s low-noise cluster cabinets feature:

  •     28.5dBA noise reduction – up to five times quieter than a standard cluster cabinet.
  •     7.2kW heat dissipation – dissipated heat is equivalent to seven, single-bar electric radiators.
  •     Expandability: Nor-Tech recommends ordering a cabinet big enough to allow for future expandability.
  •     Portability: the cabinets are equipped with castors.
  •     Compatibility with all server configurations, including blade servers.
  •     Options: dust filters, ventilation systems, cable entry boxes, etc.
  •     A range of heights: 12U, 24U, and 42U (all are 30.7 inches wide and 43.3 inches deep)

For reference, a single blade server produces about 78dBA of noise; 70dBA is equivalent to the volume of a vacuum cleaner. Removing 28.5dBA reduces the sound to a level that is halfway between normal conversation and a whisper. This means most people will not be able to hear the cluster operating inside the cabinet. The record-breaking sound reduction factor was independently verified by MIRA Test Laboratories, which conducts sound power measurement in accordance with ISO3744.

Nor-Tech President and CEO David Bollig said, “Our noise-reducing cabinet allows the cluster to function alongside other typical office equipment without being segregated into a datacenter. While the benefits of this are enormous, the cost differential is not.” These cabinets only add about 10%-15% to the total cluster cost—easily recouped by eliminating the need for dedicated server space and allowing for mobility from department to department.     

Note that while the noise-reducing cabinet provides some protection for the cluster, it is not a ruggedized case. However Nor-Tech offers ruggedized cases also.

To hear just how quiet these clusters are, watch Nor-Tech’s 30-second video: http://www.nor-tech.com/solutions/hpc/office-clusters/.

Nor-Tech built its international reputation on the industry’s easiest-to-deploy cluster solutions and guaranteed no wait time support. The company designed and built the HPC cluster that enabled the first detection of a gravitational wave—a discovery destined to change history. In addition to HPC clusters, Nor-Tech’s custom technology includes workstations, desktops, and servers for a range of applications including CAE, CFD, and FEA. Clients include some of the most respected organizations in the world. Nor-Tech engineers average 20+ years of experience and are responsible for significant high performance computing innovations. The company has been in business since 1998 and is headquartered in Burnsville, Minn. just outside of Minneapolis. To contact Nor-Tech call 952-808-1000/toll free: 877-808-1010 or visit http://www.nor-tech.com. Full release at: http://www.nor-tech.com/category/news/    
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Jeanna Rensselar
@NorTechHPC
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