April 2, 2018

Types of Thermal Management Solutions: Cold Plates

Here we continue our series on the common types of thermal management technologies and how they work. This month, we’re focusing on the use of liquid cooling in cold plates.

Liquid Cooling – Cold Plates

Similar to aluminum heat pipe design and technology, cold plates use a cooling liquid and a thermally conductive metal as thermal management solutions. But rather than relying on liquid phase change, cold plates use input tubes, output tubes, and machined flow paths to transfer heat.

Use of a cold plate for thermal management solutions

Cold plates in their most basic form are composed of a metal block (usually custom extruded aluminum or copper) with liquid-filled channels that flow from an input tube to an output tube. The box is placed directly against a heat-generating component. Heat flows through the aluminum block and into the moving liquid inside. The liquid moves through several internal channels within the block to absorb as much heat as possible, then moves outside the cold plate through output tubes, allowing the heat to dissipate into the ambient.

Types of Working Fluid

There are several working fluids available for heat dissipation in electronic devices. Water is a common choice due to its thermal conductivity, but is unsuitable for colder ambient temperatures due to its relatively high freezing point. Thermal solutions manufacturing companies can add glycol to water to lower the freezing point. Deionized water, another popular option, removes the minerals and salts that can corrode metal. Dielectric fluid is also a common choice because it is not conductive, flammable, or explosive, making it useful for sensitive electronics

Do You Need Aluminum Heat Pipe Heatsink Aluminum Services?

If you’re looking for thermal management technologies, Getec Industrial can help. We provide custom heat sinks, aluminum channel extrusion, and extruded aluminum heat sink manufacturing. For more information about our large aluminum heatsink company, contact us online or call us at 888-000-8499.