Advanced Heat Exchange Technology for Thermoelectric Cooling Devices

[+] Author and Article Information
R. L. Webb, V. Zarnescu

Department of Mechanical Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802

M. D. Gilley

Marlow Industries, Inc., 10451 Vista Park Road, Dallas, TX 75238-1645

J. Electron. Packag 120(1), 98-105 (Mar 01, 1998) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2792292 History: Received June 12, 1997; Revised October 22, 1997; Online November 06, 2007


Thermoelectric coolers (TEC) are potentially ideal devices to cool electronic components or small electronic enclosures. However, practical heat exchange can limit the COP and restrict the range of useful applications. The TEC must reject heat from the hot side to the ambient, which is typically air. The COP can be increased by reducing the hot-side temperature, which requires a high-performance heat exchanger. An understanding of the heat sources in the TEC is presented, and relations are presented to define the hot-side thermal resistance required to operate at desired operating conditions. A novel air-cooled thermosyphon reboiler-condenser system has been developed that promises significantly higher COP for thermoelectric coolers than is possible with current heat exchange technology. This heat exchanger design concept is described and compared to conventional technology.

Copyright © 1998 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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