Server Power Cords Applications in Different Cabling Systems

Each power supply has a separate power cord to support its work. Server power cord connecting the servers and PDU (power distribution unit) plays a critical role in this process. Since the power cords standard for connector types and voltage levels varies from country to country. It’s important to choose the most suitable one for network systems. This post intends to give a simple introduction to server power cords and their applications in different systems.

Power Cords Overview

Usually standard power cords or jumper power cords are available for connection to the server. Power cord consists of three necessary parts: plug, cord and receptacle. And there are many different types of power cords used all over the word. The most commonly seen types are the IEC60320 power cord and NEMA power cord. The former one is often used in US. While the latter is usually seen in North America and other countries that use the standards set by the NEMA.

Among these two types of power cords, the most popular one in some vendors like Dell, HP and IBM is the C13 to C14 power cord. And there are many kinds in this two types of power cords. Here is a simple table showing them.

C14-C13 5-15P – C13
14 to 13 power cord NEMA 15p-C13 power cord
C14-C15 5-15P – C15
C14 to C15 power cord 5-15P - C15 power cord
Applications in Different Cabling System
Cabling for Low Density System

It’s relatively easy to install cords for low density systems. Take servers in a tower configuration for an example. It needs to use a country-specific power cord for direct connection to a facility AC feed. However, server availability goals can require providing redundant AC power to the server in the form of a redundant AC bus or a UPS. The following figure shows two servers connected an UPS with a different types of server power cords. Server in picture A uses C13 to C14 power cord, and server in picture B uses NEMA 5-15P to C13 power cord.

server power cord 1

Note: Connection to a local AC outlet requires an optional country-specific power cord for each power supply. Just shown in picture A above.

Cabling for Medium Density System

Medium density system is a little complex than low density system. Therefore different types and other accessories are maybe needed to achieve an effective power connection. Just shown in the following picture, power connections are achieved using modular PDH, extension bars and C13 to C14 power cord assemblies.

server power cord 2

Note: some servers contain hot-pluggable fans accessible by sliding the chassis out on rails. This means the power cords or jumper cables connecting to the servers must have adequate length and slack to allow chassis movement while staying connected and powered up.

Cabling for High Density System

Compared with the application of power cords in the two systems mentioned above, power cords used in high density systems can be short since cable movement is of little. This following figure shows three kinds of methods to connect enclosures to AC power. The first one shown in the upper area of this figure is that the C13 to C14 power cord is used to connect a single-supply server to a vertical mount PDU, which is suitable for lower-density installations. The second shown in the central area of the figure is to use the C13 x4-to-C20 fixed cord extension bars, a method recommended for extreme-density installations using redundant power supplies. The last one shows the use of a C13 x2-to-C20 Y-cable assembly recommended for connecting a server with dual 1200-watt power supplies directly to a PDU core with C19 outlets.

server power cord 2

Note: Considering there are many cables used in high-density systems, color coding power cords are helpful in systems like that.

Conclusion

Power cords serve as an important bridge in the network device power supply system. FS.COM offers several varieties of IEC power cords, NEMA power cords, and jumper cords for server rack equipment in up to 12 colors with many different types and options for your data center power cords, including: IEC C14 to C13, C20 to C19, C14 to C15, etc. Welcome to visit our website www.fs.com for more information.