Experimental investigation of uninterrupted and interrupted microchannel heat sinks

Ulu, Ayşe Gözde
Experimental measurements are conducted on uninterrupted and interrupted aluminum microchannel heat sinks of 300, 500, 600 and 900 μm channel widths. Two different versions of interrupted channels are tested; with single interruption and with 7 interruptions. Distilled water is used as the working fluid and tests are conducted at volumetric flow rates in a range of 0.5-1.1 lpm. Thermoelectric foils are used to supply uniformly distributed heat load to the heat sinks such that for all the tests the heat removed by water is kept constant at 40 W. Pressure drop and temperature increase are measured along the channels of different configurations for a number of different flow rates. For the interrupted channels thermal boundary layers re-initialize at the leading edge of each interrupted fin, which decreases the overall boundary layer thickness. Also the flow has been kept as developing, which results in better heat transfer performance. Due to the separation of the flow into branches, secondary flows appear which improves the mixing of the stream. Advanced mixing of the flow also enhances the thermal performance. In the experiments, it is observed that interruption of channels improved the thermal performance over the uninterrupted counterparts up to 20% in average Nusselt number, for 600 micron-wide channels. The improvement of average Nusselt number between the single interrupted and multi interrupted channels reached a maximum value of 56% for 500 micron-wide channels. This improvement did not cause a high pressure drop deviation between the uninterrupted and interrupted microchannels even for the maximum volumetric flow rate of 1.1 lpm. Highest pressure drop through the channels was measured as 0.07 bar, which did not require to change the pump. In the tests, maximum temperature difference between the inlet of the fluid and the base of the channel is observed as 32.8°C, which is an acceptable value for electronic cooling applications.
Citation Formats
A. G. Ulu, “Experimental investigation of uninterrupted and interrupted microchannel heat sinks,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2012.