Corrosion auditing in industries- A Data Centre Case study

In my previous blogs we discussed in detail, the effects of corrosion in data centres and how contaminants in the air lead to equipment failure (refer to Data centres’ kryptonite and Corrosion audit and its importance), ergo how important it is to monitor the indoor air in the facility. It is now time to look at a real-life case of the effect of corrosion on equipment failure.

During an interaction with one of our client, we realised that the client is facing data centre equipment failure regularly and that they were spending a fortune on maintenance. The client was specifically facing intermittent equipment shutdown and sporadic circuit failures. We immediately suggested a corrosion audit to be performed and assess the quality of indoor air in their facility to which the client agreed.

Purafil’s Corrosion classification coupon plus (CCC +), was placed in the facility at a strategic point to assess the contaminant class for 30 days. Along with copper and silver plates, CCC + additionally has a temperature and relative humidity sensor. At the end of the 30th day, the coupon was sent to Purafil lab to assess and compile a corrosion report.

It is a simple 3-page report that provides an in-depth analysis of the air contaminants present in the facility. As per the report, the ISA class of the facility is at GX level (above G3 levels) as per ISA 71.04- 2013 guidelines. The Hydrogen Sulphide (H2S) levels are above 50 ppb and Sulphur dioxide (SO2) levels are above 300 ppb. Both our client and we were shocked to see the report since although the data centre was located in the city limits, the levels of pollutants that have entered the facility and accumulated were surprising.

The report not only suggested the composition of the corrosion film formed on the copper and silver plates, but it also gives a projection of corrosion accumulation that may occur over 1 year and 5 years, which in this case equipment failure due to corrosion was imminent well within one year of installation.

But the work does not stop here. Based on the report, Ripple Effect has suggested specific solutions to the client to address the issue immediately such as Purafil’s patented chemical media and air scrubbing equipment that specifically remove the H2S and SO2 in the indoor air and bring the severity levels to G1.

The client took the right step in damage control and saved the organization further a fortune. I will discuss the solution provided in my next blog. Stay tuned.

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