Electrohydrodynamic Air Movers for Thermal Management
Jewell-Larsen, Nels Edward
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Electrohydrodynamic (EHD) air movers are uniquely positioned to become a key emerging air mover technology to compete with mechanical rotary fans in the next generation of ultrathin consumer electronics thermal management, due to their form factor flexibility, low height capability, flow rates, and silent operation. However, as is true of many emerging technologies, EHD driven thermal management lacks the development of fundamental scaling and design rules, robust and mature design tools, and proof-of-concept demonstration of small-scale EHD systems for thermal management, which are needed to progress to the commercial sector. This dissertation, broken roughly into four parts, attempts to move EHD thermal management a step forward towards commercial application. The first, presents the development of design theory investigating the fundamental factors of pressure generation in EHD systems, transduction efficiency, and device scaling. The second presents a coupled-physics EHD numerical model and its results that take into account charge generation, charge transport, electrostatics, fluid dynamics, and heat transfer. The third presents simulations and experiential work focused on the development of a proof-of-concept meso/micro-scale EHD air mover for jet impingement forced convection cooling. The forth presents a proof-of-concept EHD thermal management solution embedded in a commercial notebook computer, demonstrating the ability to integrate an EHD thermal system into a modern notebook computer. Finally, key future efforts required to bring EHD thermal management technology to a successful commercial application are reviewed.
- Electrical engineering