Thermo-Electric-Powered Thin Film Evaporators For Cooling Power Electronics

Award Information
Department of Defense
Award Year:
Phase I
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Small Business Information
387 Technology Drive, College Park, MD, 20742
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
John Lawler
President and Technical D
(301) 403-1744
Business Contact:
John Lawler
President and Technical D
(301) 403-1744
Research Institution:
We propose developing "spot cooling" devices for the high heat flux electronic components in the Navy's shipboard electronic cabinets. Our spot cooling devices will incorporate a combination of thin film evaporators and thermo-electric power generators. Our thin film evaporators are expected to achieve the high heat removal capacities that will be required for new Integrated Power Systems (IPS), electromagnetic weapons (EMW), and high power radar electronics. The thermo-electric power generators will be used to power locally the thin film evaporators and the micropumps that may be required to return the thermal fluid to the evaporators. This local utilization of the power from a thermo-electric device maximizes the advantage of incorporating such devices in a thermal management system. Our complete cooling system will drastically reduce the waste heat that is entering the air-space of the cabinets, remove heat at a sufficient temperature to allow its removal from the working fluid via compact cooling water heat exchangers mounted on the outside of the cabinets, and maintain the electronic components at a reduced temperature despite their high heat fluxes, which will increase their reliability. Our thin-film evaporators will be able to remove a large amount of heat from high power electronics, so these electronic components (power modules, radar T/R modules, and solid-state lasers) will operate at a reduced temperature, which will increase their reliability. Our use of a two-phase working fluid system will allow the efficient removal of this heat from the electronic cabinets that house these components. One of the benefits of our thin film evaporator technology is that it reduces the size of the overall cooling system, since it requires only a fraction of the amount of fluid used in spray or jet cooling systems and fewer ancillary components. Analogous cabinet cooling systems with "spot cooling" thin film evaporators mounted on the major high-heat flux components could be designed for commercial electronic equipment, such as rack-mounted network servers in data centers. ATEC is currently working on developing a potentially high volume electronic cooling product utilizing our thin-film evaporator technology.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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