COMSOL Derived Universal Scaling Model For Low Reynolds Number Viscous Flow Through Microfabricated Pillars – Applications to Heat Pipe Technology

N. Srivastava[1], and C.D. Meinhart[1]
[1]Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of California Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara California, USA

Cooling of high-power density electronic devices remains a challenge. Microfluidic heat-pipes with the potential of achieving ultra-high thermal conductivities offer a low-cost technology for cooling electronics. To achieve high thermal conductivity, it is critical to maximize the rate of liquid transport inside the heat pipe. We propose a novel array of microfabricated pillars to maximize liquid transport. Such pillars generate high capillary pressure that spontaneously supports a high rate of liquid transport. However, the pillars have to be ingeniously designed such that the viscous drag experienced by the liquid at the pillar surface is minimal.

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