Monday, 30th November 2020

Taking HPC to the edge

Iceotope and Lenovo partner to deliver the industry’s first commercially available integrated chassis-level immersion cooled HPC micro data centre solution.

The Iceotope, Avnet and Schneider Electric partnership to jointly develop innovative, chassis-level immersion cooled data centre solutions has been joined by Lenovo to deploy its ThinkSystem SR670 servers in a highly scalable, GPU-rich, liquid-cooled Micro Data Centre solution. Sealed at chassis level, the new solution enables Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) and High Performance Computing (HPC) workloads to be deployed in close proximity to the location of data generation and use regardless of how harsh or hostile the environment.


The Lenovo ThinkSystem SR670 2U rack server delivers uncompromised HPC performance with support for up to four double-width GPUs per server. Integrating the servers with Iceotope’s Ku:l Chassis eliminates the requirement for any air cooling, delivering game-changing efficiency in energy consumption. >95% of the heat is captured and rejected via an in-rack Heat Rejection Unit (HRU) (5kW solution) or dedicated external HRU (46kW+ scalable solution).


Iceotope’s new Ku:l Micro DC solution enables many industry-standard servers to be liquid cooled and deployed outside the data centre. The new solution is offered in two scalable configurations:

  • Ku:l Micro DC (Small) <5kW
    • Processing power - Up to 4x Lenovo SR670 servers
    • Compact footprint - 24U NetShelter
    • Integrated cooling includes 5U rack mount liquid to air heat rejection unit
    • Monitoring: EcoStruxureTM IT, Compute Out of Band Management Solution
    • Service: Full lifecycle – install / decommissioning
  • Ku:l Micro DC (Medium) 46kW+
    • Fully scalable – as many 46kW equipment racks as you need!
    • Heavy lift processing capability - up to 16x Lenovo SR670 servers/ rack
    • Industry standard 48U NetShelter liquid-cooled enclosure
    • Heat Rejection – Dedicated external HRU. In-row Liquid to Air HRU and Cooling Distribution Unit (CDU) are available for data centre scale deployments
    • Monitoring: EcoStruxureTM IT, Compute Out of Band Management Solution
    • Service: Full lifecycle – install / decommissioning

Chassis-level Immersion – cools, protects and increases durability of IT

Using Iceotope’s fully serviceable Ku:l liquid-cooled chassis, servers are partially immersed in a small quantity of dielectric coolant precision delivered to hotspots. This means there is no front-to-back air cooling, no bottom-to-top immersion constraints and no physical space wasted.


By removing the need for fans or moving parts, service intervals are greatly increased allowing low-touch compute and near-silent operation in any location. Industry standard form factors allow maintenance to be carried out on-site with familiar ease and no mess. The Ku:l solution provides further unique value by completely isolating the critical IT from the environment with a perfectly sealed and resilient enclosure. This renders the IT impervious to dust, gases and humidity, enabling HPC in places that were not possible until now.

Ku:l Micro DC with full remote monitoring and management by Schneider’s EcoStruxure IT

The new micro data centres are optimised for use in remote locations and harsh, edge environments with the inclusion of Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxure IT, cloud-based DCIM to enable remote monitoring and management capability. The vendor-neutral solution sets a new standard for proactive insights on critical assets that impact the health and availability of IT environments, with the ability to deliver actionable real-time recommendations to optimise infrastructure performance and mitigate risk.

As an additional option, Avnet can integrate a MaaXBoard IoT single board computer to enable RedFish-compliant, out of band management of the IT equipment even when the servers are powered down or have become unresponsive.

David Craig, CEO Iceotope commented, “The infrastructure to provision edge expansion will be installed where space provides, outside traditional data centres – we call this the Fluid Edge. Iceotope is dedicated to ensuring the durability, reliability, efficiency and long-term viability of Fluid Edge facilities, where air cooled approaches have a limited future. Partnering with Lenovo to bring the Ku:l Micro DC to life has accelerated our capability to provide a proven and warranty-backed, chassis-level immersion cooled HPC design solution to this expanding market.”

Steven Carlini, VP Innovation and Data Center, Schneider Electric stateadded: “This integrated, immersion cooled solution brings highly intensive and efficient compute capability that “drop into” applications from the edge to large scale HPC’s. The ability to bring these ready-to-deploy liquid cooled solutions to market proves the strength of the Avnet, Schneider Electric and Iceotope partnership.”

Scott MacDonald, President Avnet Integrated Solutions concluded: “Companies looking to deploy IT in edge and other remote locations demand a non-disruptive, conventional form factor, without the need for a cost-prohibitive IT container to be installed on site to support a few enterprise grade servers. The new Ku:l Micro DC with Lenovo ThinkSystem SR670 servers provides a powerful, adaptable and scalable solution for the majority of edge deployments. The partnership with Avnet brings unique capabilities and technologies including integration of the liquid-cooled solution in its Global Technology campuses, the MaaXboard to provide out of band management, and lifecycles services to deliver global warranty and support.”

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