Cooling research

The alternative to direct air cooling

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Cooling research

Post by AgentX » Tue Feb 04, 2020 2:23 pm

Hey guys !

I am a student at the University of Technology in Delft.
Together with a group of fellow students and researchers we are investigating a new concept of liquid cooling which seems be very useful for the cooling of ICT components and computers.
It works pretty much the same as water cooling, using a fluid for cooling, thus using a radiator and fans to transfer the heat out of the fluid.
The main difference is that you don't need a pump. The fluid runs using a specific physics phenomenon (I can't really go in detail here, sorry about that .. ) and temperature difference.
This means, the higher the temperature difference, the higher the flow of fluid.
And although we cannot reveal much about the actual working, its not capillary action or phase change (as used in heat pipes).
It does however require a special fluid to operate, which is a little more expensive than destilled water or any common coolants. Yet, we estimate that it will not be overly expensive (lets say over €50,- per litre).
So, no pump, (nearly) no failure and less noise ...
But still, sounds good right ?!?

We don't really have a prototype or anything yet, it's just theory and math that says that all of this should work.
Therefore, I can't say anything yet about pricing, we just don't know yet.

Now, here's the thing. We think the technology is up to it, but we are looking to get better insights into what properties make a good cooling system and what properties you value when buying a cooling system. What do you think a cooler should feature? What features should a cooler have? What would you want a product to be?
Furthermore, we are interested to see if you guys think it'll add something to the market or would you recon there is already enough products out there?

BTW, as we are researchers, we would like to use your replies in our research. We are not sure yet how we are considering doing this, but we will somehow attribute your statements to you of course (using your nick) (we are considering using screenshots or quotes). If you would like to be mentioned in a certain way or don’t want to be mentioned at all, please let us know, we will always follow up on your request.

And of course, if you have any general questions or remarks ...

Thanks for helping us !!

Wild Penguin
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Joined: Mon Jul 01, 2013 3:30 pm

Re: Cooling research

Post by Wild Penguin » Sun Feb 16, 2020 2:02 pm

Hi AgentX!

The product should in some clear way improve on current cooling products.

You've only mentioned the new product would not have a pump. That is too little information to go on and to determine if it is actually a viable / useful as a product.

And ideal PC cooling product would be:
1) quiet
2) efficient
3) reliable (and/or require less maintenance)
(4) cheap - but enthusiasts find quality more important than price)

(1 and 2 don't make sense if they are not considered at the same time; i.e. the important question is generated noise in relation to dissipated heat).

Depending on how large a gradient your product will need, it might still need high-running fans; i.e. high-running fans might mitigate the benefit of not having a pump. So the most important question is: how does it compare to a traditional, water-based radiator (for a given volume/area of a radiator, with N x 120mm fans@1200RPM or some other fixed rate)? I.e. how many W of heat is dissipated for a given delta°C?

Other stuff is somewhat irrelevant. If it is worse than current water-based radiators, people are just not going to be interested.

If it is near/on-par, it might still be worthwhile if it is more reliable (does not need replenishment of the liquid, does not / can not leak) and/or is cheaper than current water loop -based solutions.

If it is all of the three (better in noise/heat dissipation ratio, more reliable/less maintenance and cheaper) then you definitely got a good product in your hands.

Olle P
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Location: Sweden

Re: Cooling research

Post by Olle P » Fri Feb 21, 2020 5:28 am

As I see it there are currently three major types of liquid cooling, listed below, and a new product should bring some sort of improvement to any one of these.

1. Heatpipe.
Fixed format cooling where the heat is transfered a fairly short distance from hotspot to cooling fins. Cheap and efficient.

2. AIO cooler.
Closed system for cooling of one component. Somewhat soft hoses allow some flexibility in the placement of the convector. Need a pump.

3. Custom water cooling.
Typically used to cool more than one component. Highly flexible in layout options. Convector size limited only by cost and available volume. Coloring of the water is common and often part of the reason for using water cooling in the first place. Expensive and require some maintenance.

Some decade ago there was a new cooler on the market that looked like a heatpipe cooler but used some magnetic properties to pump a liquid in a loop inside. It added no significant performance over heatpipe but was more expensive, and didn't survive on the market.

Big Pimp Daddy
Posts: 175
Joined: Mon May 30, 2005 11:26 am
Location: Sunny Swansea

Re: Cooling research

Post by Big Pimp Daddy » Thu Jun 04, 2020 4:33 am

If your top secret specific physics phenomenom is "convection", then you're a bit late to the party, a quick google will show you thermosiphons have been tried many times before...

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Joined: Sun May 24, 2020 11:47 am

Re: Cooling research

Post by pati.trip » Mon Jul 27, 2020 4:06 am

I also read recently some cooler mechanisms that are combining air/water cooling systems. Do you have experience with it? What do you think about this alternative?

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