Feature Article

Immersion Cooling Fluid: Hydrocarbons vs. Fluorocarbons


In modern data centers and server equipment, immersion cooling technology is gradually gaining prominence. This technology utilizes liquid directly in contact to cool electronic devices, replacing traditional air cooling systems, thereby enhancing efficiency and energy savings while also raising environmental and sustainability concerns. This article will discuss two common immersion cooling fluids: hydrocarbons and Fluorocarbons, and explore their impact on carbon emissions and the environment.

Immersion liquid cooling reduces carbon emissions

Immersion cooling technology effectively removes heat from electronic devices by directly contacting them with a liquid medium, thereby reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions. In contrast, traditional air cooling systems require more energy to lower device temperatures, making immersion liquid cooling technology significantly advantageous in reducing carbon emissions.

Fluorinated liquid typically outperforms mineral oil in cooling efficiency, but its use raises environmental concerns. Fluorinated liquids contain fluorinated compounds, which may cause pollution and damage to ecosystems.

Many countries have begun advocating for the ban of PFAS (Per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances), with Germany and the Netherlands leading the charge, and Denmark, Sweden, and Norway planning to join. The proposals include two aspects: a comprehensive ban and exemptions for feasible alternatives, with the earliest proposals expected to take effect by 2026. Well-known brands are also slated to cease production of PFAS-related products by 2025.
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Both mineral oil and fluorinated liquid immersion cooling fluids have their pros and cons. In comparison, while mineral oil may slightly lag behind fluorinated liquid in cooling efficiency, its environmental impact is relatively smaller, and it is easier to handle and recycle, thus possessing certain Earth-friendly advantages.

Enterprises need to consider various factors such as efficiency, cost, and environment when making choices, and make appropriate decisions based on their own needs and sustainability goals.

ESG KAORI's commitment to sustainable ESG

Considering the importance of the environment and sustainable development, more and more companies are starting to pay attention to the environmental impact of the cooling fluids they use. Some enterprises choose to prioritize mineral oil as the cooling medium for immersion liquid cooling technology to comply with ESG (environmental, social, governance) standards and fulfill their commitments to sustainable development. KAORI is also dedicated to developing related liquid cooling products, combining sustainable development concepts to promote more environmentally friendly and sustainable development.