Challenges of Data Center Fire Protection
John Leblanc, FM Global
Robert Kasiski, FM Global
Christopher Wieczorek, FM Global
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They began as computer rooms and consisted of raised floors, CPUs, tape drives, and printers. Some even had back-up power systems to permit orderly system shut down. The protection needs of these facilities were tied to tape or paper storage. A modern data center can exceed 300,000 ft2 and consist entirely of server racks where power loss is not acceptable and cooling needs are increasing exponentially. These changes create more challenging fire hazards, including higher cable density and novel cooling systems. This presentation will examine these changes and the resulting protection challenges, including the challenges of applying water mist protection systems, hazards associated with liquid cooled servers, grouped cables, and hazards of back up power systems.