Cross-Connect Blog

Why is the New Bottom Panel Accessory Important to CPI Passive Cooling Solutions?

8/19/2009 2:02:08 PM

The Bottom Panel, one of the new accessories for the next generation F-Series TeraFrame™ Cabinet System, blocks airflow into and out of the bottom of the cabinet. It features a brush sealed cable access port near the rear of the panel which eliminates bypass airflow around cables entering or exiting the cabinet.

Bill Watts, CPI’s Senior Data Center Architect explains the benefit of this new product.

TeraFrame Bottom PanelThe bottom panel is the final step in isolating hot and cold airstreams. The F-Series TeraFrame Cabinet is a completely enclosed cabinet that isolates hot exhaust air and directs it into the return ceiling plenum. However, if the cabinet is on leveling feet or casters, the bottom of the cabinet is wide open. This allows two things to happen; short circuiting of cold room air, and mixing of hot and cold airstreams depleting overall cooling capacity.

For example, a cabinet two inches above the floor would have 228 square inches of opening for airflow. A group of four cabinets would have 576 square inches of opening for airflow - equal to an opening of four square feet. That’s a lot of wasted cooling capacity and cooling efficiency.

If you are implementing CPI Passive Cooling® Solutions and are using the F-Series TeraFrame Cabinet to achieve ultimate cooling, we recommend including the Bottom Panel as part of the solution.

Configure your own cabinet with accessories using our Product Configurator. For additional help or information call 800-834-4969 or email techsupport@chatsworth.comKim Ream, Sr. eCommerce Specialist 

New F-Series TeraFrame™ Cabinet Accessories Provide More Options

8/17/2009 2:03:08 PM

CPI recently introduced a variety of new UL Listed accessories for the next generation F-Series TeraFrame™ Cabinet System. In addition to new thermal management products, the new accessories provide additional cabinet baying capabilities and supply greater cable and power management options.

New accessories include:

  • F-Series TeraFrame CabinetBottom Panel (CPI Passive Cooling Solution) – Blocks airflow into and out of the cabinet base. A brush sealed cable access port located at the rear of the panel eliminates bypass airflow around cables entering or exiting the cabinet.
  • Vertical Cable Manager – Organizes and protects cables and cords in 700 and 800 mm cabinets. Attaches directly to the mounting rails and adjusts front-to-rear to align cable openings with equipment. Using the Slide Adapter Kit (ordered separately) the Vertical Cable Manager can attach directly to the frame to allow additional front-to-rear (depth) adjustment independent of the equipment mounting rails. T-shaped fingers guide cables into each rack-mount space. The Vertical Cable Manager is shaped differently than the previous cable manager, but has the same fill rate.
  • Slide Adapter Kit – Allows 700 and 800 mm cable mangers to be attached directly to the cabinet frame and provides additional front-to-rear (depth) adjustment independent of the equipment mounting rails.
  • Front-to-Back Cable Managers – Provides an adjustable depth tray that connects front-facing and rear-facing Vertical Cable Managers, forming a continuous front-to-back cable pathway along the side of the cabinet.
  • Vertical Cable Ring Manager – Creates an internal vertical cable pathway to guide and protect cables inside cabinets. The manager attaches to the side of the equipment mounting rails and features C-shaped cable management rings that manage and organize cables.
  • Cable Lashing Bracket – Presents a C-shaped design that attaches to the cabinet frame and features three columns of inverted U-shaped tabs for fastening multiple cable bundles.
  • Power Strip Lashing Bracket – Supports one or two CPI Vertical Power Strips and provides multiple attachment points for fastening power cable bundles. For power strips wider than 2” a special bracket may be needed. Please call Technical Support for assistance at 800-834-4969.
  • Seal Kit (CPI Passive Cooling Solution) – Attaches to the frame so that hot exhaust air can no longer escape between bayed cabinets when one or both of the side panels are omitted.
  • Zero Spacing Baying Kit – Includes M6 hardware that permits two cabinets with or without side panels to be bayed when no space is required between the cabinets. Both cabinets must be the same height and depth.
  • Narrow Baying Kit – Contains brackets and hardware for baying two cabinets with or without side panels. The cabinets must be the same height, but can be different depths.
  • 24” Baying & Fascia Kit – Allows two 23.6”W (600 mm) cabinets to be bayed and centered over 24”W (610 mm) access floor tiles. The kit includes two brackets and hardware that space and connect the cabinets together along with two fascias that cover and hide the gap between the cabinets. To use this kit, both cabinets must be the same height and depth.
  • 24” Baying Brackets – Permits two 23.6”W (600 mm) cabinets to be bayed and centered over 24”W (610 mm) access floor tiles. There will be a gap of .4” (10 mm) between the cabinets. The cabinets must be the same height, but can be different depths.

These new accessories can be added to your custom cabinet using the Product Configurator or ordered separately using our eCatalog. If you have questions or comments about these products please leave a comment to this blog, call 800-834-4969 or email

New CAD Blocks Assist with Project Planning; Additional Support Available for Unique Applications

8/12/2009 6:57:45 AM

CAD-Blocks-Screenshot.gifCPI recently updated its AutoCAD 2D blocks used for assisting customers in laying out rooms and equipment in data centers, telecommunications rooms, closets and office spaces.

Several products have been added to the library including the F- and N-Series TeraFrame™ Cabinets and the Evolution™ Cable Manager. Front, top, side and isometric views are available. We will continue to update our files as new products are released or when a customer requests drawings of existing products that do not currently have CAD drawings.

The CAD files are located at They are grouped in zip files and organized by product so you can find exactly what you need quickly. If you find one that you need is not available, please contact the Technical Support Team at 800-834-4969 and we will get them developed as soon as possible for you and added to the library. You must be logged in to access these files.

Additional Support

Tech Support also offers free layout services to assist you in creating a bill of material for your project. Additionally, we have the 3 Easy Steps to Configure a LAN/Rack System worksheet that will walk you through the planning process. If you have a difficult situation that requires a unique solution, we will use our extensive product knowledge to find the best answer without you having to “re-invent the wheel”. Chances are we have faced the same or similar situation in the past.

Call us at 800-834-4969 or email for product questions, pre-sales and installation support. Tom Bradley, Technical Support Supervisor

Dilbert Faces Important Data Center Challenges With Usual Aplomb

8/10/2009 8:26:06 AM

The majority of Sunday comic readers may not have fully appreciated yesterday's Dilbert comic strip, but many of us at CPI found it very amusing. We hope you do too.

Larger version can be found at

Avoid a toxic blob by calling CPI's data center architects during the planning phase! Call us at 800-834-4969 and ask for Steve Bornfield or Bill Watts. Kim Ream, Sr. eCommerce Specialist 

What are the Basic Considerations of Building a Data Center?

8/4/2009 8:12:39 AM

Data CenterWe often receive questions concerning data centers and CPI data center solutions. Bill Watts, CPI Sr. Data Center Architect, responds to a customer who has a question about the basics of building a data center.

Question: I'm an application, systems management, and middleware admin if you will, so when it comes to an actual data center from the computer decking up, I have little experience, so with that, I was not sure of how to ask the question, but I was hoping for a list of document names I should expect from someone building a data center or if I built a data center. My client is very small and this is almost pro bono (small startup city).  Your background and company probably has the real answers ...

Answer: I will approach the answer from the requirements that need to be assembled. These will lead to the documentation that will address those requirements your engineer should be responding to or asking for. It should not be surprising that as the owner, you should be in the driver’s seat and control how your data center is configured and will ultimately function.

The key issues for any data center begin with the available power to the site. This is followed by what is going to be supported within the data center and of course must fit within the available power envelope.

There are several things that need to be considered in assembling what will be supported in the data center.


  • Determine day one requirements for compute (Blade, 1U, traditional), Spinning Storage, Tape Storage.
  • Establish a road map for growth in your data center.
  • Establish the data network structure needed to support the long range plan.
  • Calculate the critical IT load from your day one needs and 10 year milestone.
  • Calculate your cooling requirements day one and at 10 year milestone (your engineer can help calculate this value if you are not comfortable doing this yourself).


  • Evaluate your proposed site and determine if it will support your day one and 10 year minimum needs.
  • Review locations for the necessary utilities to support the 10 year minimum requirements (electrical, mechanical, and network space will grow proportionally to the planned data center requirements).
  • At this point in the planning process you have the necessary material to evaluate if the proposed site will meet your needs or another site should be considered.


  • The data that has been collected at this point will allow you to determine the quantity of cabinets and cooling units needed to service the equipment that will be stored in your facility.
  • You can now begin to plan your data center layout. Determine if you want to use a traditional data center approach or possibly CPI Passive Cooling, in-row cooling, water-based cooling cabinets, air or water economization, etc.  CPI’s PUE Calculator can help you forecast possible expenses.
  • Those calculations will also lead you to the electrical and mechanical plant requirements.

A good consultant should be able to assist you in reviewing this data and definition of your true base requirements. The consultant can then prepare recommendations of at least three possible solutions. From those three you should together select which one best aligns to your business need and available budget. The consultant can then develop a layout utilizing the approach agreed upon and provide CFD modeling showing anticipated performance. They should also be able to estimate utility cost of operation. This will help you in getting budgeted funds to proceed on your project.

As you may guess CPI offers this service. To get our help on your project call us at 800-834-4969 or email us at techsupport@chatsworth.comBill Watts, CPI Sr. Data Center Architect