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Purdue researchers develop tiny refrigeration unit

Category: CPU Cooling
Posted: July 8, 2008 06:45PM
Author: Andrewr05

Some researchers from Purdue University (Some very ingenious things have come from Purdue) have made a small refrigeration unit that may be cooling laptops or desktop in the future. The device is the size of a CPU, that allows very easy integration into current architecture and ease of integration into future designs. As we all know most computers are air cooled which never allows you to go below ambient (The temperature of the surrounding air) temperatures. With this tiny cooling system you can go below ambient, refrigeration style cooling systems are available for desktop systems however they are usually too expensive, too complicated and most of all too big for the average consumer or laptop applications.

The device created at Purdue has very tiny compressors and tubes to pump its refrigerants throughout the unit. CPU technologies have changed quite a bit in the last few years with 45nm (and smaller) fabrication technologies being employed on today's computer chips. With these die shrinkages comes a lot of heat centralized into a very small area. Soon we will come to a point where our processors are outputting too much heat per cm for a normal heatsink and fan to efficiently cool.

The cooler isn't expected to go mainstream for a little over two years, however expect some high end devices around the two year mark to begin showing up with these units.

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