In data center hot aisle containment, a baffle is anything that disturbs the flow of air through a room, rack or system. A baffle changes the course of airflow or re-directs it. Baffles also send cooled air to the airflow panels in the cold aisle and minimizeairflow corridors in the raised floor.
In a server, however, and in rack-mounted servers, a single row of fans may operate to create an airflow through the chassis from front to rear, which is directed by passive ducts or shroudsacross individual components' heat sinks. For servers, heat management is even more important because they run 24/7, are in thin chassis and have more components.
Figure 1: A sample representation of an Airflow Baffle
Generally servers are designed to operate at max cooling efficiency with the shroud. Their main purpose is basically to direct the airflow over the hottest parts of the system. What one should note though is that there will still be airflow, but usually the CPU coolers are put so that air flows over their heatsinks efficiently with the shroud.
Best Sellers - Airflow Baffles
A9918A HP Core IO Controller Board for RP RX servers
AB422A HP 146GB 10K U320 SCSI Hard Drive Disk
Addonics ADSACF-7MR COMPACT FLASH/SATA ADAPTER
CBL-0042L Supermicro 24-Pin ATX Power Extension Cable