Browse Prior Art Database

Interlock Device for Stacked Server Blades

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000168179D
Original Publication Date: 2008-Feb-29
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2008-Feb-29
Document File: 4 page(s) / 118K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

This invention provides a method for controlling the assembly/disassembly of a multiple-unit blade enclosure. An interlock device added to the chassis assembly provides a block for the blade release mechanism when in the closed position, while allowing the release mechanism to operate when in the open position. The open and closed positions are linked to the presence or absence of a flex circuit assembly, such that the device must be in the closed position for the flex circuit to be properly installed. All operations of the interlock device and multiple-unit blade assembly are able to be done without tools.

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Interlock Device for Stacked Server Blades

This invention helps manage the disassembly process for a scenario involving multiple server blades stacked on top of one another. Our particular example incorporates a three-blade stack, where each of the top two blades is connected to the bottom blade via flex circuit cable. By way of design, either of the top two blades can be readily disconnected from their underside counterpart in simple, tool-less fashion. This causes a problem in the case where a user tries to disassemble the blades without first detaching the proper flex circuit connections. We are basically looking for a regulated top-down approach to ensure the sequence of cable/blade disengagement does not harm any associated components or hardware.

    One possible solution would be to distribute a set of instructions that outlines the step-by-step procedure for tearing down a particular blade stack. Of course, such instructions could potentially be ignored or misunderstood by the user.

    Our invention implements a sliding interlock device that causes mechanical impedance to those trying to disassemble the blade stack in improper fashion. The solution is tool-less, abiding by the trend of most blade mechanicals, and only adds one extra piece to the assembly. There should be no need for instructions when using this apparatus, as it regulates the order of business mechanically when tearing down our blade stack. Thus, the occurrence of damage due to lack of user awareness should diminish. A snapshot of the part is shown below. This version is constructed from sheet metal.

    The following two pictures show the sliding interlock device and how it resides in the blade base mechanical. The first view depicts the slider tucked into the base channel, which is a common feature used to guide each server blade into the appropriate chassis rails. The second snapshot shows an underside view of this same assembly, where two tabs on the slider run along the...