The data center industry has experienced significant growth over the last decade, mainly due to the increased use of the internet for our day to day activities such as e-commerce, social media, video streaming, and healthcare. This growth in demand results in higher energy costs, as data centers can be energy intensive facilities. A significant portion of the energy used in data centers is for cooling purposes. Hence, it is one of the important areas of optimization to be addressed to create more efficient data centers. Among the many ways to increase data center efficiencies, air flow management is a key solution to many existing data centers. Fundamentally, there are three main schemes: hot-aisle containment, cold-aisle containment, and exhaust chimney containment. This paper's focus is to experimentally characterize the following cold aisle configurations: open aisle, partially contained aisle, and fully contained aisles. Experimental data presented to evaluate the effectiveness of the different configurations are rack inlet contour plots, tile and rack flow rates, pressure measurements, and server central processing unit (CPU) temperatures.

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