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Liquid cooling of a multitude of closely spaced planar electronic modules housed between parallel metal plates

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000021957D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Feb-17
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Feb-17
Document File: 2 page(s) / 54K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

The invention accomplishes the liquid cooling of a multitude of closely spaced planar electronic modules, housed between parallel metal plates, by sealing the space between the metal plates of adjacent electronics modules and pumping coolant through the space between the plates. The gaskets used to seal the parallel plates are specially shaped to provide a coolant-leak detection mechanism.

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Liquid cooling of a multitude of closely spaced planar electronic modules housed between parallel metal plates

The invention teaches a means of water cooling two parallel plates by sealing them using a gasket especially shaped to provide a leak detection mechanism. The main advantages of the invention are its reliability and simplicity of design.

    The top-left portion of figure below shows an electronic module of known art. The module consists of an electronic circuit board housed in two parallel metal plates. It is also known art to use thermally conductive foams to form a thermal bridges between the electronics and the metal plates.

    The bottom-left of figure below shows an assembly of many closely spaced electronic modules. In the present invention the adjacent metal plates are cooled by water flow. The water is contained between the plates by using a specially designed gasket shown in figure below. The gasket, preferably made of butyl rubber, has its cross section shaped into a hour-glass shape by either gluing a shaper to its outer surfaces or by inserting metal wires with in the rubber, somewhat analgous to metal wire reinforced automobile tires. The reason for the hour glass shape is that when the gasket is squeezed to seal the metal plates, the gasket contacts each metal plate along two lines of contact. Between the two lines of contact, the sealed space formed by the gasket and the metal plate can be monitored by a vacuum line for water leaks.

    Water is flowed between the adjacent parallel metal plates as follows. Water enters through a manifold in one of the metal plates and leaves through a manifold in the other metal plate. One of the metal plate also contains a vacuum connection to monitor the leak in the space between a gasket.

    To assemble the multitude of electronic modules, the invention provides a means of collapsing the gasket so as to avoid mechanical interference between the gasket...