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Method and System for Optically Monitoring Contaminants in Data Center Fluid Systems

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000241931D
Publication Date: 2015-Jun-09
Document File: 5 page(s) / 325K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

A method and system is disclosed for optically monitoring a data center coolant infrastructure for the presence of chemical/organic contamination using a fluorescent dye based monitoring and control unit.

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Method and System for Optically Monitoring Contaminants in Data Center Fluid Systems

Disclosed is a method and system for optically monitoring a data center coolant infrastructure for the presence of chemical/organic contamination using a fluorescent dye based monitoring and control unit. The monitoring can be programmed based on the needs of the data center. The method and system, then, automatically alerts a data center operator if the chemical/organic contamination in the data center coolant rises beyond a threshold or increases rapidly.

FIG. 1 illustrates a test loop in accordance with an embodiment of the method and system disclosed herein.

Figure 1

As illustrated in FIG. 1, the method and system consists of a chemical monitoring and control unit (monitoring unit) attached in-line to a coolant loop to be monitored. The coolant loop also has a bypass for use when the monitoring unit is being serviced or needs to be removed from the line. The monitoring unit is designed to allow the majority of the coolant to flow directly through the monitoring unit. A manual or

automated 3-way valve is adjusted to shunt a small portion of the coolant into TEST

and CONTROL lines. Both these lines have an identical test element. However, the TEST line also has a fluorescent dye injector. The fluorescent dye injector injects a suitable dye such as, but not limited to, CalcorFluor White into the TEST line that selectively binds to an organic material. The water, dye and organic contaminant mix flow through an optical test element to be exposed to light with a specific excitation frequency that causes the bound dye molecules to fluoresce. Some of the emitted light plus other stray light pass through a detection optical fiber back to a detector assembly

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that filters the light to allow just the emitted wavelengths of interest through to a detector, which could be a photomultiplier tube or a photodiode or some other suitable

optical detector. The detector, then, converts the emitted light signal to an electrical signal which is then sent back to a controller. The optical test element in the CONTROL line works identically but is used to determine if there is any background dye or other material in the coolant stream that may also be fluorescing alongside the dye molecules attached to the contaminant molecules. The electrical signal output from the detector attached to the CONTROL line test element is used to offset/correct the TEST signal and also determines if the dye is accumulating in the coolant over time.

FIG. 2 shows a detailed view of the optical test element.

Figure 2

As illustrated in FIG. 2, one or more optical fibers can be bolted into the optical test element using optical port connectors. The optical test element also possesses a filter to help remove any of the injected dye molecules since some dyes can be unsafe. However, over time the filter can become clogged with organic debris and with the filtered dye. The different...