- on Education & Information
- Published in issue 6/2003 on page 0
Cooling Electronic Components
Some really cool developments
One thing has characterised the electronics industry since the change from valves to solid-state devices — both components and products have got smaller. The inevitable consequence of this is that components are running much hotter, but have less space for cooling to take place. This article looks at some of the recent developments and innovations in cooling techniques. The heatsink is no longer the complete solution that it once was, but it is still widely used. The efficiency of any design depends on the surface area of the fins, and the heat transfer coefficient (how effectively heat can actually be removed from its surface). The trouble with using air to do so is that it is a rather good insulator. But it does have obvious advantages — particularly for consumer uses.