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Experimental Investigation of Micro/Nano Heat Pipe Wick Structures

[+] Author Affiliations
H. Peter J. de Bock, Kripa Varanasi, Pramod Chamarthy, Tao Deng, Ambarish Kulkarni, Brian M. Rush, Boris A. Russ, Stanton E. Weaver

General Electric Global Research Center, Niskayuna, NY

Frank M. Gerner

University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH

Paper No. IMECE2008-67288, pp. 991-996; 6 pages
  • ASME 2008 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 10: Heat Transfer, Fluid Flows, and Thermal Systems, Parts A, B, and C
  • Boston, Massachusetts, USA, October 31–November 6, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4871-5 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3840-2
  • Copyright © 2008 by ASME


The performance of electronic devices is limited by the capability to remove heat from these devices. A heat pipe is a device to facilitate heat transport that has seen increased usage to address this challenge. A heat pipe is a two-phase heat transfer device capable of transporting heat with minimal temperature gradient. An important component of a heat pipe is the wick structure, which transports the condensate from the condenser to the evaporator. The requirements for high heat transport capability and high resilience to external accelerations leads to the necessity of a design trade off in the wick geometry. This makes the wick performance a critical parameter in the design of heat pipes. The present study investigates experimental methods of testing capillary performance of wick structures ranging from micro- to nano-scales. These techniques will facilitate a pathway to the development of nano-engineered wick structures for high performance heat pipes.

Copyright © 2008 by ASME
Topics: Heat pipes



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