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Modeling and Testing a Cold Plate

[+] Author Affiliations
Bryan R. Wilcox, Donald W. Mueller, Jr., Hosni I. Abu-Mulaweh

Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne

Paper No. IMECE2006-14645, pp. 613-617; 5 pages
  • ASME 2006 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Heat Transfer, Volume 3
  • Chicago, Illinois, USA, November 5 – 10, 2006
  • Conference Sponsors: Heat Transfer Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4786-1 | eISBN: 0-7918-3790-4
  • Copyright © 2006 by ASME


The objectives of this work were to build and test a liquidcooled cold plate, and then to develop a numerical model to describe the thermal characteristics of the cold plate. An important parameter of interest was the total thermal resistance of the cold plate which is defined as the maximum temperature difference divided by the net heat flow rate. A cold plate was constructed by machining nine parallel, rectangular channels into an aluminum base (1.65 cm × 7.6 cm × 40 cm) upon which an aluminum cover plate was then welded. Twelve thermocouples were used to measure the temperature of the plate (surface and fin tip) and the circulating fluid at the inlet, outlet, and mid-plane. The working fluid was a 50/50 ethylene glycol-water mixture. Three heater blocks were mounted to the cold plate, and the assembly was insulated so that heat loss to the surroundings was minimized. Four runs were performed with flow rates ranging from 56 g/s to 95 g/s, and after steady-state conditions were reached the temperatures were recorded. Using these temperature measurements, the total thermal resistance was calculated. The thermal resistance of the cold plate was also calculated using a one-dimensional numerical model; agreement between the experimental measurements and model predictions is good. The methods described and results presented in this paper are useful to applied thermal engineers.

Copyright © 2006 by ASME



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