What To Consider When Choosing An Raised Access Floor For Your Project?
Choosing the raised floor and having it installed correctly is a job that requires much more involvement than it seems, the material of the panel, strength and durability are important factors that must be considered.
Raised Floor Panel Material & Finish
Raised floors are found with various specifications. In the past, panels were made of wood, wood composite or hollow steel. Most were not particularly strong, nor did they need to be, since the racks were lighter as they housed less equipment when compared to the current reality.
The chosen material must have zero maintenance, never be waxed or polished to avoid the accumulation of dirt and dust. It must be hard enough that the equipment does not cause tooth or deformation on the surface. This discards rubber and vinyl materials. And, of course, carpet of any kind should never be used, as it creates and traps particles.
The surface cover most commonly used in data centers is known as high pressure laminate (HPL) and is usually made of cement and carbon steel or cast aluminum, which gives it the ability to withstand high loads.
In order to avoid surprises, it is necessary to evaluate the weight of the equipment that will be on the floor and the “rolling load”, that is, everything that can be moved within the installation, otherwise the plates may collapse or break. Generally, manufacturers specify the concentrated load and the distributed load that the material can support per m2.
Anti-Static Performance of Raised Floor Panel
We must also be concerned with anti-static characteristics. We need dissipative static raised floors that conduct more than 100 volts away from our bodies and equipment.
This requires a material that has the necessary static dissipation qualities and a grounded substructure that prevents the generation of static electricity. Floors with antioxidant spray phosphating treatment, coated with electrostatic paint can solve this problem.
Tightness of the Whole Raised Access Floor System
If the raised floor is used for the passage of air that will cool the data center, it must follow technical specifications for this purpose, it is important that the plates are sealed in order to minimize air leakage.
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