Thermal Management

Nanotube-Based Device Cooling System

These cooling systems can be used for electronic devices in the computer manufacturing, thermal management, and semiconductor industries. Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are being studied for use in high-strength/lowweight composites and other applications. Recent research on thermal dissipation materials for high-power electronic devices is generating a lot of interest in various industries. Carbon nano tubes have attracted much attention due to their extraordinary mechanical and unique electronic properties. Computer chips have been subjected to higher and higher thermal loads, and it is challenging to find new ways to perform heat dissipation. As a result, heat dissipation demand for computer systems is increasing dramatically.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronic Components, Electronics & Computers, Thermal Management


High-Energy-Density Solid-State Li-Ion Battery with Enhanced Safety

John H. Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio High-energy-density and safe rechargeable batteries are required for NASA’s future exploration missions. Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries are attractive energy storage systems due to their relatively high energy and power densities. However, the unfavorable side reactions between the electrodes and the liquid electrolyte adversely impact performance. These interfacial reactions are in the form of either anodic oxidation of the electrolyte, or dissolution of the cathode into the electrolyte. As a result, the practical capacity and cycle life of the battery are limited. More importantly, the reactions at the cathode-electrolyte interface pose a serious threat to safety due to the electrolyte decomposition and formation of gaseous products within the cell. In addition, growth of lithium dendrite on the anode can cause cell short circuit and lead to fire or even explosion in the presence of liquid electrolyte.

Posted in: Briefs, Thermal Management


Custom 19” Fan Tray

Verotec (Derry, NH) recently custom designed intelligent fan trays for a major defence project. The 19-inch rackmounted 1U trays have six fans, strategically located within the tray to maximise the cooling of critical elements of the electronic system located above the fan tray. Key issues for the fan tray design were noise levels, current consumption and reliability. A custom control board sequentially powers up each of the fans in order of importance to minimise initial inrush current. An embedded microprocessor controls fan speed using PWM technology. Reliability is critical, so three separate events will trigger a warning signal: if power is lost to the fan tray, if the controller board itself develops a fault or if the speed of any fan falls below 20% of maximum. The fan cooling the main processor board is deemed to be a critical component, so if its speed falls below 20% the relay latches into the alarm position. If triggered by any of the other five fans, the alarm relay will re-energise when the speed increases above the 20% threshold. For Free Info Visit

Posted in: Products, Defense, Electronics & Computers, Thermal Management, Consumer Product Manufacturing


Thermal Management Solutions for Medical Electronics

Electronic devices used in the medical industry have thermal management needs similar to those in other fields. Their electronics must stay cool enough to run continuously and correctly within their operating temperature range. Sound thermal management allows excess heat to be efficiently moved, spread, and dissipated. The result is improved system reliability and service life while, in many cases, it also helps designers reduce device package size, weight, energy consumption, and noise.

Posted in: Features, MDB, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Thermal Management, Medical


Self-Diagnostic Accelerometer Field Programmable Gate Array

The system could be utilized as a portable and temporarily installed diagnostic system. John H. Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio The development of the self-diagnostic accelerometer (SDA) is important to both reducing the in-flight shutdowns (IFSD) rate — and hence reducing the rate at which this component failure type can put an aircraft in jeopardy — and also as a critical enabling technology for future automated malfunction diagnostic systems. Critical sensors, such as engine sensors, are inaccessible to the operator during typical operation due to safety concerns and enclosed environment. The SDA can diagnose the sensor in-flight and remotely with minimal interference with the typical operation of the sensor. The SDA system utilizes programmed health algorithms that can automatically determine the health, therefore increasing the precision in diagnosing sensor faults by removing the erroneous perspective and opinions of a human operator. The health of the sensor could also be determined immediately, which would remove its erroneous effect on a system that depends on the sensor.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Electronics & Computers, Power Supplies, Thermal Management, Sensors


Capacitively Coupled, High-Voltage Current Sensing for Extreme Environments

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California Wide-temperature and extreme-environment electronics are crucial to future missions. These missions will not have the weight and power budget for heavy harnesses and large, inefficient warm boxes. In addition, extreme-environment electronics, by their inherent nature, allow operation next to sensors in the ambient environment, reducing noise and improving precision over the warm-box-based systems employed today.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Electronic Components, Electronics & Computers, Power Supplies, Thermal Management, Sensors


Heat-Conducting Plastic Dissipates Ten Times Better

Engineers at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, have developed a plastic blend that, they say, can dissipate heat up to 10 times better than its conventional counterparts. While plastics are inexpensive, lightweight, and flexible, they tend to restrict the flow of heat, so their use has been limited in technologies like computers, smartphones, and other devices. This new research could lead to light, versatile, metal-replacement materials for more powerful electronics.

Posted in: MDB, News, Electronics, Thermal Management, Composites, Materials, Plastics, Medical


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