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Smart pumpless loop for micro-channel electronic cooling using flat and enhanced surfaces

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2 Author(s)
Mukherjee, S. ; Int. Electron. Cooling Alliance, Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN, USA ; Mudawar, I.

Two-phase cooling of a square simulated electronic device surface of 21.3 mm side was successfully carried out without the need for a pump. This smart, passive cooling system incorporates a self-enhancing and self-sustaining mechanism, wherein the system inherently enhances its cooling capacity by increasing the velocity of the two-phase mixture along the boiling surface when an increase in heat flux is sensed. Other practical attributes of this pumpless loop are small liquid inventory requirements and absence of the incipient boiling temperature drop. It is shown small surface tension and contact angle render dielectric coolants such as FC-72 ideally suited for flow in narrow gaps. These unique properties are responsible for very small bubble size, precluding any appreciable blockage of the replenishment liquid flow even in narrow gaps. Critical heat flux (CHF) was found to generally increase with decreasing boiler gap. CHF for flat, micro-channel (with 0.2 mm rectangular fins) and mini-channel (with 1.98 mm rectangular fins) surfaces was 4.5, 5.9, and 5.7 times greater than for pool boiling from a flat surface for corresponding gaps. A pressure drop model was formulated to predict coolant mass flow rate, boiling surface inlet and exit velocities, and pressure drop components throughout the loop. The model predictions illustrate the pumpless loop's self-sustaining and self-enhancing attributes, and relate CHF trends to those of the two-phase mixture acceleration along the boiling surface.

Published in:

Components and Packaging Technologies, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:26 ,  Issue: 1 )

Date of Publication:

March 2003

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