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Thermal Management of Low-Temperature Semiconductor Arrays

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-SC0022896
Agency Tracking Number: 0000266152
Amount: $199,998.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: C54-34e
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2022
Award Year: 2022
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2022-06-27
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-03-26
Small Business Information
1046 New Holland Ave
Lancaster, PA 17601
United States
DUNS: 126288336
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Nathan Van Velson
 (717) 205-0662
Business Contact
 William Anderson
Phone: (717) 205-0662
Research Institution

Statement of the Problem Being Addressed: The next generation of high energy physics experiments, including experiments searching for low mass dark matter particles, will require advanced detectors consisting of large arrays of semiconductor sensors operating at cryogenic temperatures. The currently planned cooling system involves submerging these sensors in pressurized liquid nitrogen. This presents significant engineering challenges, especially considering the strict requirements for ultra-low background radiation and the associated shielding required.
Statement of how this problem is being addressed: We proposed to develop an alternative cryogenic cooling technology for thermal management of semiconductor arrays used in high energy physics experiments. The proposed thermal management system involves the use of a novel cryogenic loop heat pipe to extract, transfer, and reject waste heat from the sensor arrays.
What will be done in Phase I? In the Phase I program, the feasibility of the proposed cryogenic loop heat pipe cooling system for semiconductor detectors will be demonstrated through design and analysis, and the fabrication and testing of a sub-scale prototype. This includes material selection that considers both thermal requirements and the background radiation requirements. The background radiation due to the proposed system and shielding requirements will be estimated.
Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: If successful, the technology developed in the Phase I and Phase II programs will provide the physics community with an alternative low radiation background cryogenic cooling solution for semiconductor detectors proposed for use in many upcoming experiments. The proposed system is also easily adaptable to cooling of large array detector arrays on space-based experiments. The proposed loop heat pipe based cryogenic cooling technology provides a versatile and adaptable solution for thermal management of physics experiments, both on the ground and in space, helping to increase the pace of scientific discovery.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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