The rapid developments of computer industry and semiconductor processes lead to high component density, high-energy dissipation, and compact volume of the electronic components in systems. Those are especially true for the high-energy density of the CPUs, resulting in high temperature rise for the electronic chips. To preserve the life span of the integrated circuits and to ensure their proper functions, it is necessary to develop proper means for evaluating the related thermal management in order to effectively dissipate the energy released from these electronic parts and systems. This project used Icepak 4.0, developed by Fluent, to determine thermal-fluidic behaviors of the notebook computer, desktop computer, and switch power supply, under an environmental temperature of 35°C. In addition, parametric studies were carried out to evaluate the distribution of temperature inside the systems under investigation and the effectiveness of overall thermal management for the systems. Icepak uses the unstructured grid generation technique for the three-dimensional modeling of the electronic components and systems. With the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) solver employed by Fluent and using the finite volume method, Icepak simulates the flow and temperature fields inside the system or component of concern. Parametric studies — including the positions for venting, the locations for the cooling fans, the directions of flow for the fans (either by blowing or suction), and the number of fins used for heat dissipation — were carried out to determine the effectiveness of the thermal management designs of the desktop computer, notebook computer, and switch power supply under an environment temperature of 35 °C. Results of this study indicated that the peak component temperatures for the three systems under study are 84 °C, 80 °C, and 81 °C, respectively, while the maximum allowable temperatures suggested by the manufacturers of these three items are 85 °C, 90 °C, and 85 °C, respectively.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.