Airflow Baffles

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

Airflow Baffles

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.