Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS20060060333 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/198,889
Publication dateMar 23, 2006
Filing dateAug 5, 2005
Priority dateNov 5, 2002
Publication number11198889, 198889, US 2006/0060333 A1, US 2006/060333 A1, US 20060060333 A1, US 20060060333A1, US 2006060333 A1, US 2006060333A1, US-A1-20060060333, US-A1-2006060333, US2006/0060333A1, US2006/060333A1, US20060060333 A1, US20060060333A1, US2006060333 A1, US2006060333A1
InventorsLalit Chordia, John Davis, Stephan Fatschel, Robert Panella, Brian Moyer
Original AssigneeLalit Chordia, Davis John C, Stephan Fatschel, Robert Panella, Brian Moyer
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Methods and apparatuses for electronics cooling
US 20060060333 A1
Abstract
Methods and apparatuses for cooling a device are disclosed. The device may be an electrical or electronic component that includes an integrated circuit or embedded control. The apparatus employs a fluid that near or above its critical pressure and at least one heat exchanger. At least two configurations are disclosed: one with a pump and another without a pump.
Images(9)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(66)
1. An apparatus for cooling a device comprising:
(a) a fluid near or above its critical pressure;
(b) at least one heat exchanger;
(c) a pump for circulation of the fluid; and
(d) a fluid connection between the heat exchanger and the pump.
2. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein the device is selected from the group consisting of electrical or electronic components comprising at least an integrated circuit or embedded control.
3. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein the fluid is selected from the group consisting of carbon dioxide, water, air, and a natural hydrocarbon.
4. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein the pump utilizes electrical, electromechanical, mechanical or magnetic means of fluid flow.
5. The apparatus as in claim 4, wherein the actuation of the pump is selected from the group consisting of electrohydrodynamic, magnetic and electromechanical actuations.
6. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein the at least one heat exchanger is of microchannel type.
7. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein an absence of lubricants increases performance of the apparatus.
8. The apparatus as in claim 1, further comprising control by software, hardware or other method.
9. The apparatus as in claim 1, further comprising at least one sensor to monitor and control temperature and temperature-related phenomena.
10. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein power is derived from a public power network of the device.
11. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein power is derived from an independent source.
12. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein the at least one heat exchanger and the pump are contained in the apparatus package.
13. The apparatus as in claim 12, further comprising at least one heat exchanger that is external to the apparatus package.
14. The apparatus as in claim 13, wherein the external heat exchanger is connected to the apparatus by a fluidic connection.
15. The apparatus as in any one of claims 12-14, wherein the heat exchanger is integrated into a package of the device.
16. The apparatus as in claim 15, wherein the external heat exchanger is in thermal contact with the device.
17. The apparatus as in claim 1, wherein the fluid comprises thermally conductive nanoparticles to increase cooling performance.
18. The apparatus as in claim 1, further comprising an additional effect selected from the group consisting of electrohydrodynamic and magnetic effect to increase cooling performance.
19. An apparatus for cooling a device comprising:
(a) a fluid near or above its critical pressure;
(b) at least two heat exchangers; and
(c) a fluid connection between the heat exchangers.
20. The apparatus as in claim 19, wherein the device is selected from the group consisting of electrical or electronic components comprising at least an integrated circuit or embedded control.
21. The apparatus as in claim 19, wherein the fluid is selected from the group consisting of carbon dioxide, water, air, and a natural hydrocarbon.
22. The apparatus as in claim 19, wherein the at least one heat exchanger is of microchannel type.
23. The apparatus as in claim 19, further comprising a control by software, hardware or other method.
24. The apparatus as in claim 19, further comprising a sensor to monitor and control temperature and temperature-related phenomena.
25. The apparatus as in claim 19, wherein the at least one heat exchanger is contained in the apparatus package.
26. The apparatus as in claim 25, further comprising at least one heat exchanger external to the apparatus package.
27. The apparatus as in claim 26, wherein the external heat exchanger is connected to the apparatus by a fluidic connection.
28. The apparatus as in any one of claims 25-27, wherein the heat exchanger is integrated into the package of the device.
29. The apparatus as in claim 28, wherein the external heat exchanger is in thermal contact with the device.
30. The apparatus as in claim 19, wherein a density difference is maintained between at least two heat exchangers.
31. The apparatus as in claim 19, wherein the fluid comprises thermally conductive nanoparticles to increase cooling performance.
32. The apparatus as in claim 19, further comprising an additional effect selected from the group consisting of electrohydrodynamic and magnetic effect to increase cooling performance.
33. A method of cooling a device, the method comprising:
(a) providing a fluid near or above its critical pressure;
(b) transferring heat from the device to the fluid;
(c) transferring heat from the fluid to an external environment; and
(d) providing a pump for fluid flow.
34. The method as in claim 33, wherein the device is selected from the group consisting of electrical or electronic components comprising at least an integrated circuit or embedded control.
35. The method as in claim 33, wherein the fluid is selected from the group consisting of carbon dioxide, water, air, and a natural hydrocarbon.
36. The method as in claim 33, wherein the pump utilizes an electrical, electromechanical, mechanical or magnetic means for fluid flow.
37. The method as in claim 33, wherein the actuation of the pump is selected from the group consisting of electrohydrodynamic, magnetic and electromechanical actuations.
38. The method as in claim 33, wherein an absence of lubricants increases the performance of the apparatus.
39. The method as in claim 33, further providing a control by software, hardware or other method.
40. The method as in claim 33, further providing at least one sensor to monitor and control temperature and temperature-related phenomena.
41. The method as in claim 33, further providing power from a public power network of the device.
42. The method as in claim 33, further providing power from an independent source.
43. The method as in claim 33, further adding thermally conductive nanoparticles to the fluid to increase cooling performance.
44. The method as in claim 33, further adding an electrohydrodynamic or magnetic effect to increase cooling performance.
45. A method for cooling a device comprising
(a) providing a fluid near or above its critical pressure;
(b) transferring heat from the device to the fluid; and
(c) transferring heat from the fluid to an external environment.
46. The method as in claim 45, wherein the device is selected from the group consisting of electrical or electronic components comprising at least an integrated circuit or embedded control.
47. The method as in claim 45, wherein the fluid is selected from the group consisting of carbon dioxide, water, air, and a natural hydrocarbon.
48. The method as in claim 45, further providing a control by software, hardware or other method.
49. The method as in claim 45, further providing at least one sensor to monitor and control temperature and temperature-related phenomena.
50. The method as in claim 45, further providing an addition of thermally conductive nanoparticles to the fluid to increase cooling performance.
51. The method as in claim 45, further providing an addition of an electrohydrodynamic or magnetic effect to increase cooling performance.
52. The method as in claim 33 or claim 45 wherein, nanomaterials with high heat capacity are added to the fluid to reduce the fluid flow rate.
53. The apparatus as in claim 1 or claim 19 wherein, nanomaterials with high heat capacity are added to the fluid to reduce the fluid flow rate.
54. The method as in claim 33 or claim 45 wherein the fluid is a high thermal conducting fluid.
55. The apparatus as in claim 1 or claim 19 wherein the fluid is a high thermal conducting fluid.
56. The method as in claim 39 or claim 48 wherein the control software and hardware are integrated with the device.
57. The apparatus as in claim 8 or claim 23 wherein the control software and hardware are integrated with the device.
58. A method of removing heat from a printed circuit boards consisting of:
(a) Impelling means to impel a fluid;
(b) At least one heat exchanger for transferring heat from the heat-transfer fluid to an external environment;
(c) At least one heat exchanger for accepting heat to the heat-transfer fluid from within a printed circuit board;
(d) A closed loop connecting a-c.
59. An apparatus for removing heat from a printed circuit board consisting of:
(a) A mechanism to impel a fluid;
(b) At least one heat exchanger for rejecting heat;
(c) At least one heat exchanger that accepts heat laminated to a printed circuit board;
(d) Fluid connections among a-c.
60. The apparatus as in claim 59 wherein the heat-accepting heat exchanger incorporates microchannels of a depth of less than 500 micro meters.
61. The apparatus as described in claim 59 wherein the heat exchanger that accepts heat is formed from materials from the group consisting of metallic, ceramic, polymeric or a combination thereof.
62. The apparatus as described in claim 59 wherein the fluid is chosen from the group consisting of water, carbon dioxide, ammonia, sulfur dioxide, chlorofluorocarbon, hydrofluorocarbon, hydrocarbon or combination thereof.
63. The apparatus as described in claim 59 wherein the impelling means is a pump.
64. The apparatus as described in claim 59 wherein the impelling means is a compressor.
65. The apparatus as described in claim 59 wherein heat is removed from multiple sources on the printed circuit board.
66. The apparatus as described in claim 59 wherein the printed circuit board has thermal vias.
Description
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application is a continuation-in-part of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/702,396, which itself claims priority to U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/424,142 filed Nov. 5, 2002, and also claims priority to U.S. provisional patent application 60/619,504 filed Oct. 15, 2004, teachings of which are incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND

1. Field

Aspects of this disclosure generally relate to cooling systems and methods that employ a fluid near or above its critical pressure, and more particularly to a small-scale apparatus needed to operate such a cycle. Typical target applications include, for example, cooling of printed circuit boards, computers, computer components, analytical and laboratory equipment, lasers, and remote sensing equipment.

2. Background

The cooling of such devices as computers, servers, telecommunications switchgear and numerous other types of electronic and medical gear has been an intense area of research for quite some time. The need for increased performance, together with ever increasing compactness, has led to greatly increased levels of heat dissipation from these devices. Integrated circuits work faster, more reliably, and with less current leakage if their temperature is kept as low as possible. The heat emitted by these circuits can overwhelm the cooling capacity of conventional air-blown heat sinks, especially in the cases of thin-profile apparatuses such as laptop computers and stacked server boards. Another method of improving a heat sink is to construct it as a thermoelectric cooler, known as a Peltier cooler, which enables the temperature at the junction with the heat source to be substantially below the temperature of the heat source itself. Peltier coolers require more input power than can be dissipated and are therefore an inefficient means of refrigeration. The attachment of a heat pipe to an electronic component is another method of removing heat from a target device. Typically, one end of the heat pipe is exposed to a heat source while the other end is exposed to a heat sink. Evaporation of a working fluid inside the heat pipe at the exposed end allows for heat to be absorbed from the heat source. In the absence of a pumping means to speed the rate of mass transfer within the heat pipe, capacity is limited.

Microchannel heat exchangers through which a pumped fluid flows can take the place of conventional air-blown heat sinks. In such cases, the heat exchanger could be placed atop an integrated circuit so as to coot it directly. Liquid coolant within the microchannel heat exchanger would be impelled toward a secondary heat-rejecting heat exchanger by pumping, capillary action, thermo-syphoning, electrohydrodynamic or other means of fluid flow and returned to the microchannel heat exchanger as coolant. The small size of the channels allows for high pressure operation, which widens the possibilities for heat-transfer fluids to use in the system.

Alternatively, heat from integrated circuits can be drawn from within the printed-circuit boards upon which they are mounted by means of thin heat sinks that are laminated into the boards themselves. Until now, these heat sinks have been passive components that conduct heat to an external heat exchanger, which is typically cooled by countercurrent air, such that they supplement the function of a heat-sink that is mounted on top of an integrated circuit. Examples are found in U.S. Pat. No. 6,288,906 and others which describe the use of conductive vertical posts, or “thermal vias” to transport heat to metallic planes that are typically located on the top or back side of a printed circuit board. This metallic plane can serve a primary function as the electrical ground for the board. Blish et at (U.S. Pat. No. 6,518,661) take this concept a step further by connecting internal conductive planes first with one set of thermal vias that runs down from the heat-generating elements, then with another set of thermal vias that runs up to a air-blown heat sink that is mounted some distance away from the integrated circuit. All of these inventions are limited by the thermal conductivity of the transporting media, which in turn is limited by the temperature difference that can be achieved between the conductive media and cooling air. More heat-removal capacity can be achieved if the heat conducting media contained microchannels capable of transporting a coolant.

A key problem in bringing any microchannel structure to commercial reality is in connecting fluid inlets and outlets in a manner that is not so bulky as to defeat the design advantages of the thin structure itself. In U.S. Pat. No. 5,099,910, Walpole and Missaggia teach a means of installing one central inlet and two outlets on one level of a two-level structure, with holes arranged in such a way that fluid flows in opposite directions in adjacent channels, thereby reducing the temperature gradient for fluid entering and exiting the device. More elaborate manifolding systems have appeared since, but most employ a similar two- or even three-layer distribution system (U.S. patent application 2004/0104022, Kenny et at). As these manifolds become more complicated, however, heat exchangers tend to grow in thickness, and they would no longer be candidates for incorporation within laminated printed circuit boards.

SUMMARY

An apparatus for cooling a device includes the following components: a fluid that is near or above its critical pressure, a heat exchanger, a pump for circulating the fluid, and a fluid connection between the heat exchanger and the pump. The device may be an electrical or electronic component that includes an integrated circuit or embedded control. The fluid may be carbon dioxide, water, air, or natural hydrocarbon. The pump may utilize electrical, electromechanical, mechanical, or magnetic means of fluid flow and the actuation of the pump may be electrohydrodynamic, magnetic, or electromechanical actuation. The heat exchanger is of microchannel type.

The disclosure further relates to the apparatus recited above, where an absence of lubricants increases the performance of the apparatus. Control may be provided by software, hardware, or other method. A sensor may be used to monitor and control temperature and temperature-related phenomena. Power may be derived from a public power network of the device or an independent source.

The disclosure further relates to the apparatus recited above, where the heat exchanger and the pump are contained in the apparatus package. A heat exchanger may be external to the apparatus package. The external heat exchanger is connected to the apparatus by a fluidic connection. The heat exchanger is integrated into a package of the device. The external heat exchanger is in thermal contact with the device.

Further aspects of the apparatus as recited include the fluid comprising thermally conductive nanoparticles to increase cooling performance and an additional effect of electrohydrodynamic or magnetic effect may be used to increase cooling performance.

A method for cooling a device that consists of the following: providing a fluid near or above its critical pressure, transferring heat from the device to the fluid, transferring heat from the fluid to an external environment, and providing a pump for fluid flow. The details of the disclosure mentioned in the previous paragraphs can also be applied to this method as well.

Another aspect of the invention comprises an apparatus for cooling a device includes the following components: a fluid that is near or above its critical pressure, two heat exchangers and a fluid connection between the heat exchangers. The details of the disclosure mentioned in the previous paragraphs can also be applied to this apparatus as well. In addition, the apparatus provides for a density difference to be maintained between the heat exchangers. Additionally, nanomaterials with high heat capacity may be added to the fluid to reduce the flow rate. Alternatively, the fluid may be a highly conducting fluid.

A method for cooling a device that consists of the following: providing a fluid near or above its critical pressure, transferring heat from the device to the fluid and transferring heat from the fluid to an external environment. The details of the disclosure mentioned in the previous paragraphs can also be applied to this method as well.

Additionally, a method is disclosed for removing heat from printed circuit boards by means of a heat exchanger that is laminated to the top or bottom sides of, or within, the structure of the board. An apparatus for executing this method is further disclosed. Said apparatus includes a thin heat-accepting heat exchanger, though which at least one array of microchannels is constructed. Said thin heat exchanger is capable of withstanding internal pressure of up to 6,000 psi, which permits the use of a wide variety of heat-transfer fluids, including such fluids as water, carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons, chlorofluocarbons, fluorinated hydrocarbons, ammonia and sulfur dioxide. The heat exchanger is formed from the materials from the group consisting of metallic, ceramic, polymeric or combination thereof.

An apparatus for cooling a device that includes a mechanism to impel a heat-transfer fluid, which can be a pump or compressor; at least one heat-rejecting heat exchanger; at least one heat-accepting heat exchanger that is laminated to a printed circuit board and which may be in contact with thermal vias that extend to the heat emitting device on the board surface; and fluid connections among these elements.

The printed circuit board itself may hold more than one heat emitting device, many, if not all, of which are cooled by the laminated heat acceptor.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The drawings are provided to illustrate some of the embodiments of the disclosure. It is envisioned that alternate configurations of the embodiments of the present disclosure maybe adopted without deviating from the disclosure as illustrated in these drawings.

A detailed description of the disclosure follows with reference to the following drawings:

FIG. 1 is a schematic representation of the microcooler for electronics cooling that utilizes a pump.

FIG. 2 is a schematic representation of the microcooler for electronics cooling that does not utilize a pump.

FIG. 3 presents an overall schematic of a pumped cooling system as in FIG. 1, showing a typical printed circuit board through which a microchannel heat exchanger is placed.

FIG. 4 shows a typical printed circuit board having a central heat-emitting processor, along with peripheral surface-mounted devices, and with a thin-plate microchannel heat exchanger laminated within. A cross-sectional detail A shows a pattern of microchannels emerging from the end of the board.

FIG. 5 describes the channel construction in cross-sectional view.

FIG. 6 shows the positioning of a microchannel heat exchanger, in cross-sectional view, within a printed circuit board

FIG. 7 presents performance data for a thin microchannel cooling system.

FIG. 8 depicts a typical server mother board, showing the positions of heat-generating integrated circuits, with the route of embedded microchannels shown in a shaded path.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Description

The present disclosure provides novel methods and apparatuses for cooling using a fluid near or above its critical pressure. The cooling methods herein relate to a sealed, closed loop for circulation of a fluid. The cooling system is comprised of at least one heat exchanger and may include a pump. All components may be connected within a closed circuit and may be integrated into one package or distributed throughout the device. The apparatus provides a means of cooling devices, including, but not limited to, electrical and electronic devices, and other devices and components having at least an integrated circuit or embedded control. Examples of such devices include electrical, electronic or optical elements within an appliance or the appliance itself, with at least an integrated circuit or embedded control that generates heat, including computers, servers, telecommunications switchgear, radio frequency devices, lasers and numerous other types of electronic equipment, medical equipment, military hardware and many more items that are generally compact in design.

In its basic operation, the apparatus causes a cooling fluid to circulate between a heat acceptor, where heat is absorbed from the device being cooled, and a heat rejecter, where the absorbed heat is discharged from the apparatus, thereby cooling the fluid so that it can re-circulate to the heat accepter. The fluid flows through small channels of less than 1 millimeter in length, width or diameter. Because of frictional forces within these channels, the fluid must be impelled in some manner. The present disclosure describes two methods of impelling the fluid—one by means of a pump, the other by utilizing density differences and thereby doing without a pump. The heat rejecter in this apparatus is a type of heat exchanger that causes heat from the apparatus' fluid to transfer to an ambient fluid, typically air. The heat accepter in this apparatus is a heat exchanger than is in direct or indirect contact with the device.

According to the present disclosure, a pump may be used in the system to circulate a fluid around the closed circuit and through at least one or more heat exchangers for accepting and rejecting heat. The pump may be used for circulation of the fluid through the loop. Many types of pumps can be used for the purpose. The pump can be electrical in nature, meaning that the driving force is strictly electrical in nature and does not involve mechanical moving parts. Specific examples of electrical pumps include electrohydrodydnamic (EHD). In EHD pumps, an electric field is applied to a dielectric fluid, inducing an electric charge in the fluid and dragging fluid along with it as the electric field is made to travel down the flow path. The effect can be enhanced with the use of small particles in the fluid, which can become charged and move with the field, dragging fluid along with them and thus actuating a pumping effect. If the electric field were made static, i.e., it does not travel along the flow path, then the electric pump might take the form of electrokinetic pumps, such as electro-osmotic pumps.

Alternatively, the pump can be mechanical in nature, wherein the immediate driving force that impels the fluid is mechanical, such as the action of a reciprocating piston or a rotating-vane impeller. The force that drives a mechanical pump can itself be electrical in nature, such as an electric motor, in which case the combination of pump and motor can be described as actuated by electromechanical means.

A further means of fluid flow is magnetic in nature, as in the case of pumping element that moves in response to a changing magnetic field. An example is a piston impeller that moves back and forth with the changing direction of a magnet field. The magnetic field may result from electrical current flowing through a coil. As the current reverses direction, so does the magnetic field and the impeller. Such pumps can be described as magnetically actuated, because the means for actuating the driving element is magnetic.

The present disclosure also includes a method and apparatus for cooling without the use of a pump. In such case, the heat absorbed from the heat exchangers alters the characteristics of the fluid. Such an alteration—a change in density or viscosity—drives the flow of the fluid between the heat exchangers.

The present disclosure exploits some of the properties of a fluid near or above its critical pressure, which enable a reduction in the size of such components as heat exchangers and a pump. These reductions also allow for the process to use less energy. The said fluid is may be carbon dioxide, water, air or a natural hydrocarbon.

Heat transfer can be further improved with the addition of additives to fluid, such as thermally conductive nanoparticles. Such additives improve the heat transfer characteristics of the fluid, such as thermal conductivity. Nanoparticles may also provide a mechanism for inducing fluid flow in EHD devices. In addition, additives can be added to increase the heat capacity of the fluid which helps in reducing the flow rate of the fluid required to cooling certain heat load.

Another way to improve heat transfer is to limit or eliminate lubricants that might be contained in the fluid. Such lubricants would normally leak from the pump or be added to the fluid to increase the mechanical performance of the system. Such lubricants may coat the heat transfer area effectively reducing the heat transfer efficiencies. In a preferred embodiment of this disclosure, the pump—if used at all—is operated without the aid of lubricants and lubricants in the fluid are avoided.

All of the components and interconnections of the apparatus may be connected and sealed into one package. The entire package is contacted with the external surface of a device element and heat is transferred between the device element and the apparatus. In some cases, the components of the cooling apparatus may also be distributed across more than one device element rather than sealed into a single package. For example, a single heat-rejecting heat exchanger might serve all sub-assemblies of an apparatus in a device, not just one of them.

In one preferred embodiment, FIG. 1 shows a schematic of the cycle components of the present disclosure. As detailed and labeled in the diagram, the apparatus is comprised of a pump 13 and heat exchangers for heat rejection 14 and heat acceptance 11 in a closed loop with all components connected. Said apparatus has a regulating means and sensors to monitor and control performance and environmental conditions. For example, a sensor can relay temperature information to a control mechanism or software that in turn causes the pump to increase (or decrease) speed so as to vary the rate of fluid flow, and by consequence, the rate of heat dissipated by the apparatus. If the temperature is too high, fluid flow is increased; if the temperature is too low, fluid flow is decreased. Any method of control can be integrated into the cooling device. Power to said apparatus may be derived from the public net of the device or from an independent source. A public net is a circuit contained within the device that derives electric power from a power source that is also contained within the device. It supplies power to all components of the device, hence its description as “public” within the device itself. Such internal power sources typically rectify power that is available from commercial nets. The apparatus as disclosed herein may derive power internally from the public net, or it may be supplied by a separate electrical connection to an independent, commercial net.

The apparatus attaches to the packaging of the integrated circuit and at least one heat exchanger is near or in contact with said device. The heat accepting exchanger 11 of the system faces toward said packaging of the device and is directly in thermal contact with it. Heat exchanger 11 may be located in any position relative to the device, for example above or below the heat source 15, and it may have any suitable configuration. The heat rejecting exchanger 14 faces away from said device. Heat exchanger 14 may be located in any position relative to the device and may have any suitable configuration. A fan that is directed toward heat exchanger 14 may be used to discharge heat from the closed loop.

The heat exchanger, or exchangers, used in the apparatus are preferably of a microchannel type, in which case the channel dimensions are less than 1 millimeter in cross-sectional length, width or diameter. The smaller the channel dimension, the larger the wall surface area can be, and hence, the more area there is for heat transfer. Within limits determined by the manufacturability of the channels and the increase in pressure drop, and with it power to drive the pump, channels should be as small as possible.

The heat exchanger may be integrated into the device, typically as part of the device “package,” i.e., components, adhesives and sealants that hold the device together as a single unit. For example, the heat rejecter may be mounted atop an integrated circuit, with a fan, and continuously blow heat away from the device package. The heat accepter, meanwhile, by be contained within the device package in the form of a microchannel heat exchanger that is in direct contact with the integrated circuit itself, or more likely, in direct contact with a heat sink that is itself in contact with the integrated circuit.

The pump can be selected from commercially available models such as Thar Technologies' P-10, P-50 or P-200 Series pumps, or can be designed to suit the specific cooling application.

In another preferred embodiment, there is a heat exchanger in addition to the one or more heat exchangers within the single unit packaging of the apparatus. Said additional heat exchanger is external to the apparatus but still is connected to the loop of the components within the single apparatus. Piping connects said external heat exchanger to the components within the apparatus packaging, providing a means for fluid flow between components of the cooling apparatus. The external heat exchanger faces away from the device. A fan may be attached to an external heat-rejecting heat exchanger is used to discharge heat from the closed loop.

In electronic devices such as microcomputers, the heat dissipated from an integrated circuit can range from 25 to 1,000 watts, and more typically between 50 and 200 watts. The area available for contact by the heat accepter against such an integrated circuit can rage from between 0.1 square inches and nearly 4.0 square inches. This combination of heat dissipation and area available calls for heat acceptors that are capable of removing as much as 1,000 watts per square inch, but typically in a range of 50 to 300 watts per square inch. The flow rate for a fluid above the critical point that is removing heat at this rate can be measured in milliliters per minute. For carbon dioxide, the rate is between 200 and 1,000 milliliters per minute.

In another preferred embodiment, FIG. 2 shows a schematic of the cycle components of the present disclosure in which case the pump is omitted. As detailed and labeled in FIG. 2, the apparatus is comprised of at least one or more heat exchangers for heat rejection 14 and heat acceptance 11 in a closed, connected loop. Said apparatus has a regulating means and sensors to monitor performance and environmental conditions. In contrast to the pumped apparatus, described above, the sensor output might be used to control the speed of a fan that blows cooling air against the heat rejecter. The temperature difference between components 14 and 11 causes a density gradient that drives fluid flow between them. Low viscosity of the fluid around the critical point also reduces the resistance of the fluid to flow.

The apparatus attaches to the packaging of the integrated circuit and at least one heat exchanger is near or in contact with said packaging. The heat-accepting heat exchanger 15 of the system faces toward said packaging of the device and is directly in contact with it. The heat-rejecting heat exchanger 14 faces away from said packaging. A fan attached to the heat-rejecting heat exchanger 14 is used to discharge heat from the closed loop.

The heat exchanger, or exchangers, used in the apparatus are preferably of a microchannel type, in which case the channel dimensions are less than 1 millimeter in cross-sectional length, width or diameter. The smaller the channel dimension, the larger the wall surface area can be, and hence, the more area there is for heat transfer. Within limits determined by the manufacturability of the channels and the increase in pressure drop, and with it power to drive the pump, channels should be as small as possible.

The heat exchanger may be integrated into the device, typically as part of the device “package,” i.e., components, adhesives and sealants that hold the device together as a single unit. For example, the heat rejector may be mounted atop an integrated circuit, with a fan, and continuously blow heat away from the device package. The heat accepter, meanwhile, by be contained within the device package in the form of a microchannel heat exchanger that is in direct contact with the integrated circuit itself, or more likely, in direct contact with a heat sink that is itself in contact with the integrated circuit.

In another preferred embodiment, there is a heat exchanger in addition to the one or more heat exchangers within the single unit packaging of the apparatus. Said additional heat exchanger is external to the apparatus but still is connected to the loop of the components within the single cooling apparatus. Piping connects said external heat exchanger to the other components within the apparatus, providing a means for fluid flow between said components of the cooling apparatus. The external heat exchanger faces away from the device packaging. A fan attached to the heat-rejecting heat exchanger is used to discharge heat from the closed loop.

There is a plurality of advantages that may be inferred from the present disclosure arising from the various features of the apparatus, systems and methods described herein. It will be noted that other embodiments of each of the apparatuses, systems and methods of the present disclosure may not include all of the features described yet still benefit from at least some of the inferred advantages of such features. Those of ordinary skill in the art may readily devise their own implementations of an apparatus, system and method that incorporate one or more of the features of the present disclosure and fall within the spirit and scope of the disclosure.

EXAMPLE 1

In the case of carbon dioxide, the fluid would be maintained at a pressure above 1,070 pounds per sq. in. (absolute). Heat capacity is typically between 0.4 and 1.0 Btu per pound-° R, except near the critical point, at which it can jump up to 30 Btu per pound-° R, Thermal conductivity increases by a factor of almost four around the critical temperature. These conditions promote efficient heat acceptance and rejection when heat is exchanged against ambient air. The pressure difference between the heat rejecter and heat accepter is that which corresponds to the pressure drop of the apparatus, and can be as low as a few pounds per square inch. This difference is small enough to be overcome with a small pump.

EXAMPLE 2

In the case of a pumpless scheme, as shown in FIG. 2, flow is assured by a density gradient, aided by the low viscosity of the fluid near or above the critical point. In the case of carbon dioxide. Density at the critical temperature is 0.63 g/ml at a pressure of 1,100 pounds per sq. inch and drops quickly to half of this density with only a 5° F. temperature rise. Viscosity, meanwhile, remains low, ranging from 0.047 centipoise at the critical temperature to 0.023 centipoise at 93° F., both conditions at 1,100 psi.

Referring to FIG. 3, the microchannel cooling system 1 includes a mechanism 13 to impel a fluid, a microchannel heat exchanger 11 that accepts heat picked up from a target device, another heat exchanger 14 that rejects heat picked up by the heat exchanger that accepts heat and the associated piping 16, controls and valves. The cooling apparatus may be used for refrigerating or cooling a target device. In the case of refrigeration to sub-ambient temperatures, the system's fluid impeller 13 could be compressor and there would also be a fluid expansion device 15 that constricts fluid flow in such a way that higher pressure is maintained between the compressor outlet and through the heat exchanger 11 that rejects heat, while lower pressure is maintained from the inlet of the heat exchanger 11 that rejects heat to the inlet of the compressor. Such expansion devices may take any of several forms known to the art of refrigeration, and in particular to this invention may take the form of fixed- or variable-width orifices, as well as capillary tubes of sufficient length to provide adequate pressure drop. In the case of cooling to ambient temperatures, a pump may be used without the need for a fluid-expansion constrictor. The fluid may be any of several types common to heat transfer, including but not limited to water, ammonia, sulfur dioxide, chlorofluorocarbon, hydrofluorocarbon, hydrocarbon, carbon dioxide, or a combination thereof. The fluid used in the system may be in liquid or gaseous state, as well as in a supercritical state.

One embodiment of the current invention is shown in FIG. 4, a printed circuit board 2 that includes a heat-emitting microchip 21, circuit line traces (not shown) mounted on its surface and a tab for electrical connections 22 along one edge. Additional tabs 23 and A1 are meant for insertion into connectors (not shown) to the heat exchanger A4 that resides within the structure of the laminated board between regular circuit-board laminations A3. At the outer edge of these tabs can be seen the microchannels A2 of the heat exchanger A4. Also seen in Detail A is part of one of the surface mounted devices, shown as A5. The heat exchanger A4 can reside at any layer position, be it top, bottom or laminated between the top and bottom (as shown). Also, the connection tabs 23 can be relocated to any other position along the edges of the printed circuit board, or they can be replaced entirely by connections that are placed on the top or bottom surface of the board. FIG. 3 merely represents one example of a board configuration. What is common to all configurations, however, is the heat exchanger that accepts heat has a thin profile that is preferably, less than 1.0 millimeters and more preferably less than 10 mils, which is similar to the thickness of copper-clad laminates that make up most of the printed circuit board structure. The heat exchanger that accepts heat may be formed of materials from the group consisting of metallic, ceramic, polymeric or a combination thereof

FIG. 5 shows a cross section of the heat exchanger that accepts heat. The heat exchanger 3 consists of a substrate 31 onto which the microchannels 32 are formed and a top layer 33 that bonds to the unpatterned areas of the substrate to form a capping layer above the microchannels. Channels can be straight or meandering. They may be formed by any of several methods known to the art of image transference onto surfaces. The path followed by the channels might follow a pattern that is transferred from a drawing or photograph, as in the cases of photolithography and embossing.

FIG. 6 shows a cross-sectional view of a printed circuit board 4. The heat exchanger 41 that accepts heat is positioned with its microchannels passing under an integrated circuit 42 that is mounted on top of the board. The heat exchanger forms one of the lamination layers that make up the entire board 4. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 6, the heat exchanger 41 is separated from the integrated circuit 42 by at least one layer of epoxy lamination 43, though which an array of thermal vias 44 facilitates direct contact with the heat-emitting device that is mounted on top of the board, which can be an integrated circuit, through vertical, thermal conductors.

The heat exchanger that accepts heat may be positioned within a printed circuit board as any layer in the lamination process. Furthermore, it may be added to the top or bottom sides of a printed circuit board. Thermal vias contribute greatly to the transference of heat from the heat-emitting devices to the heat exchanger that accepts heat within the board. Thermal vias, as shown in FIG. 6, may be present in the printed circuit board but are not a required condition.

The cooling system of the present invention is capable of withstanding internal pressures that might be encountered with heat-transfer fluids undergoing evaporation as they absorb heat, or might be encountered as a result of a pressure differential that develops between the inlet and the outlet of the microchannel array. Included in this group of fluids are such environmentally benign materials as water and carbon dioxide.

EXAMPLE 3

A heat exchanger that accepts heat measuring 100×100 millimeters square and 0.010 inches in thickness is constructed with an array of 80 microchannels running through the center of the lamination, from one side to the opposite side, and laminated into a printed circuit board configuration of layers with FR-4 epoxy insulation. The channels measured nominally 200 microns wide by 100 microns deep and were separated by a distance of nominally 100 microns. In the center of the board was a heat source measuring 27×27 millimeters. The microchannel heat exchanger that accepts heat was separated from direct contact with the heat source by the distance of one layer of FR-4 but was in indirect contact with the heat source through a square array of 81 thermal vias.

Heat emitted by the heater was from 15-55 watts. Into this heat exchanger was passed carbon dioxide at 84 bar and 37° C. inlet temperature, and at flowrates ranging between 0.18 and 1.70 gm per sec. As shown in FIG. 7, the temperature at the center of the heat source can be controlled to under 90° C., which corresponds to a temperature difference between the center junction of the hot chip and the fluid flowing though microchannels (represented as the y-axis of FIG. 7) of about 53° C., at a CO2 flow rate as low as approximately 0.65 gm/sec, given a heating rate of 40 watts. Pressure drop at this flow rate is approximately 20 psi.

A single run of microchannels in the heat exchanger that accepts heat may serve more than one integrated circuit on a printed circuit board, however. FIG. 8 shows a layout of chips on a printed circuit board 6. The board 6 holds an assortment of integrated circuits. The integrated circuits 62 that are above the path of the microchannels are cooled. The other integrated circuits 63 may not be directly cooled by the single run of microchannels; however, more than one run of microchannels is possible, such that chips 63 are also cooled. Given the heat-removal capability of just one such bundle of microchannels, as demonstrated in the example, it is possible to remove most of the heat dissipated by surface-mounted devices on a printed circuit board.

The heat exchanger that accepts heat is connected to the rest of the cooling system first by connectors that either deliver and distribute fluid to the microchannels at one end of the channel array and then gather the fluid at the discharge end. Connectors lead into pipes or tubes that direct flow to other system components: a pump or compressor to impel the fluid throughout the system; a heat exchanger that rejects heat for purposes of expelling heat to the environment; and in the case of sub-ambient refrigeration, an expansion device to relieve the pressure of the heat-transfer fluid and drive its temperature lower with little change in enthalpy. The heat-rejecter need not be of a microchannel design and typically uses blown air as a medium for cooling the heat-exchange fluid. The location of the pump or compressor depends on the thermodynamic conditions desired at different points in the loop.

The connector is joined to the heat exchanger that accepts heat in any suitable manner, including but not limited to clamping or soldering. One way to expose the microchannels outward of a printed circuit board is by means of connection tabs 61 and 64 (inlet and outlet). These are positioned at opposite edges of the heat exchanger that accepts heat because the single run of microchannels is spread directly across the printed circuit board. It is also possible to direct the microchannels in a broad 90-degree sweep across the board, such that the connection tabs are on adjacent edges. Alternatively, the microchannels could be turned around by 180 degrees and exit along the same edge as the inlet. Connecting through tabs on edges of the heat exchanger that accepts heat is just one method for passing fluid to and from the heat exchanger that accepts heat. Edge connection tabs do have the advantage of taking up only a small amount of space and allow installation onto boards that are typically placed in slots on mounting racks. Connection tabs can also be mounted on the surface.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7665325Sep 12, 2006Feb 23, 2010International Business Machines CorporationMulti-fluid cooling system and method with freeze protection for cooling an electronic device
US8695358 *Apr 12, 2012Apr 15, 2014Abb Research Ltd.Switchgear having evaporative cooling apparatus
US20100132924 *Apr 24, 2008Jun 3, 2010National University Of SingaporeCooling device for electronic components
US20100218930 *Mar 2, 2010Sep 2, 2010Richard Alan ProeschelSystem and method for constructing heat exchanger
US20110181842 *Jan 7, 2011Jul 28, 2011Naoki KannoLight source apparatus and projector type image display apparatus
US20110186270 *Mar 2, 2010Aug 4, 2011Suna Display Co.Heat transfer device with anisotropic heat dissipating and absorption structures
US20120291997 *Mar 27, 2012Nov 22, 2012Chien-An ChenLiquid cooling device
US20120297798 *Apr 12, 2012Nov 29, 2012Abb Technology AgSwitchgear Having Evaporative Cooling Apparatus
Classifications
U.S. Classification165/104.33, 257/E23.098
International ClassificationH01L23/473, F28F3/12, F28D15/02, F28D15/00
Cooperative ClassificationF25B2309/061, F28D15/0266, F28F2260/02, H01L23/473, F28F3/12
European ClassificationF28D15/02M, H01L23/473, F28F3/12