High heat flux microprocessor cooling using binary fluid mixtures

As the heat fluxes produced by modern high-performance microprocessors continue to rise, so too must the effectiveness of the removal of these fluxes. Accordingly, a large amount of research has focused on developing techniques to enhance cooling in computer systems. A novel method of doing so involves replacing the single-phase liquid or two phase-liquid vapor coolants typically employed in such systems with binary fluid mixtures. Previous studies indicate that this may increase mixing within the flow and/or improve the critical heat flux (CHF) of the system, potentially leading to significant increases in heat transfer. The proposed project will therefore investigate the use of such mixtures in microprocessor cooling technologies in greater detail. The first part of the project will use experiments performed in simple flows to study heat transfer in fluid mixtures and identify the mixtures capable of significantly enhancing heat transfer. In the second part of the project, these mixtures will be tested in existing microprocessor cooling technologies, including both spray cooling and microgap cooling technologies. Should the research be successful, this may allow the partner organization to increase the clock speeds, and thus the performance, of their high-performance servers.

Alaïs Marie-Pierre Hewes
Faculty Supervisor: 
Laurent Mydlarski
Partner University: