COOLING DEVICE HAVING FINS
ARRANGED TO FUNNEL AIR
Embodiments of the present invention relate to cooling units. More specifically, embodiments of the present invention pertain to heat sinks and heat exchangers.
A device commonly used to cool components such as processors includes a base element that has a flat surface that can be tightly fit against the component to be cooled. The opposite surface of the base element has a number of fins. Heat from the component is transferred to the base element. The fins enhance dissipation of the heat from the base element. Using a fan, air is directed over the base element and past the fins.
Electrical components are becoming smaller yet more powerful, and keeping them cool is becoming more challenging. For instance, higher performance processors generate more heat than their lower performance counterparts, and are smaller in size than their predecessors.
The problem of keeping computer components cool is compounded because the trend is to put these higher performance (higher heat load) components into smaller chassis or cases. A consequence of this trend is that less height is available within the cases for cooling units. This problem is expressly evident in servers such as rack-mountable servers (e.g., 1U form factor servers), where only about 1.75 inches of height is available. The challenge of cooling computer components is further compounded because these reducedheight servers are densely packed with components and circuitry, limiting air flow both in volume and direction.
A conventional approach to solving the above problems is to add ducting to improve air flow to the components to be cooled. However, this solution results in increased costs. Greater volume cases can be used, but they negate the preference for smaller cases. Larger cases also mean that fewer servers can be placed into a room or rack of a given size. Lower power components can be used, but then the performance of the server would be reduced.
Accordingly, a method and/or device that can provide improved cooling of smaller and more powerful components would be advantageous. A method and/of device that can accomplish this within the confines of the smaller cases currently in use, without significantly increasing costs or reducing performance, would be particularly advantageous. Embodiments of the present invention provide these and other advantages.
DISCLOSURE OF THE INVENTION
Embodiments of the present invention pertain to devices for cooling a component, and to methods thereof. In one embodiment, a cooling device includes a base that can be coupled to a component to be cooled, so that heat is transferred from the component to the base. The device also includes fins coupled to the base. The fins are arranged to funnel air from an air intake end of the device toward a location on the base.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
The accompanying drawings, which are incorporated in and form a part of this specification, illustrate embodiments of the invention and, together with the description, serve to explain the principles of the invention:
FIG. 1A illustrates one view (e.g., a side view) of a cooling device mounted on a component according to one embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. IB illustrates another view (e.g., an end view) of a 5 cooling device mounted on a component according to one embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 2 illustrates a horizontal cross-sectional (top down) view of a cooling device according to one embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 3 illustrates a horizontal cross-sectional (top down) view of a cooling device according to another embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a cooling device according 15 to one embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 5 is a flowchart of a method for cooling a component according to one embodiment of the present invention.
The drawings referred to in this description should not be understood as being drawn to scale except if specifically 20 noted.
BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE
25 Reference will now be made in detail to various embodiments of the invention, examples of which are illustrated in the accompanying drawings. While the invention will be described in conjunction with these embodiments, it will be understood that they are not intended to limit the invention
30 to these embodiments. On the contrary, the invention is intended to cover alternatives, modifications and equivalents, which may be included within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims. Furthermore, in the following description of the present
35 invention, numerous specific details are set forth in order to provide a thorough understanding of the present invention. In other instances, well-known methods, procedures, components, and circuits have not been described in detail as not to unnecessarily obscure aspects of the present
Aspects of the present invention may be implemented in a computer system that includes, in general, a processor for processing information and instructions, random access (volatile) memory (RAM) for storing information and
45 instructions, read-only (non-volatile) memory (ROM) for storing static information and instructions, a data storage device such as a magnetic or optical disk and disk drive for storing information and instructions, an optional user output device such as a display device (e.g., a monitor) for dis
50 playing information to the computer user, an optional user input device including alphanumeric and function keys (e.g., a keyboard) for communicating information and command selections to the processor, and an optional user input device such as a cursor control device (e.g., a mouse) for commu
55 nicating user input information and command selections to the processor.
FIG. 1A illustrates a side view of a cooling device 10 mounted on a component 2 according to one embodiment of the present invention. Cooling device 10 can also be referred
60 to as a heat sink. The component 2 can be an electrical component. In particular, component 2 can be an electrical component, such as a processor or integrated circuit, that is utilized in a computer system (e.g., within the computer system housing). In general, component 2 generates heat,
65 and the function of cooling device 10 is to remove that heat and dissipate it to the environment, thereby cooling component 2.