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A Cold Plate Cooling System for Servers and other Electronic Enclosures
Keywords: Liquid cooling, cold plates, servers
There are two fundamental problems with air cooling. Moving sufficient volume of air takes considerable energy and the thermal resistance of the air to solid (i.e. heatsink and CRAC cooling coils) is quite high, necessitating a steep thermal gradient between source and sink. In most cases, this gradient must be created artificially through the use of a chiller. Using liquid cooling solves both of these problems. However, as traditionally implemented, such systems have proved costly and difficult to service. Over 90% of servers shipped are either in 1U or blade format. These configurations permit simple access to all hot components and are thus amenable to being cooled with a single cold plate. As servers are not rigid, and their internal components are not coplanar with the server lid, there were several engineering challenges to overcome to create a system that was a) low cost and b) simple to service. Our paper will discuss these issues and present results from full scale testing being performed as part a comparison study of data center cooling systems sponsored by SVLG (Silicon Valley Leadership Group).
Phil Hughes, CEO
Clustered Systems Company, Inc.
Menlo Park, CA

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