All electronic devices and circuitry have transient and steady power states where excess heat is generated and needs to be moved away to improve reliability. Heat pipes are one of the most efficient ways for moving thermal energy from one point to another, using a combination of evaporation and condensation of a working fluid to transfer heat. In the EU-funded project KTTM-OPPUP (Key technologies of thermal management – Optimisation of heat transfer performance and manufacturing process of ultra-thinned sintered heat pipes), scientists built ultra-thin heat pipes for high-power light-emitting diode (LED) systems. Ranging from 2 to 2.45 mm in thickness, they can be used to cool LED headlights in vehicles by efficiently dissipating waste heat. Except for high heat flux applications, the team also built ultra-thin heat pipes of thickness 0.6 to 1 mm to cool smartphones. Proper thermal management technology can increase efficiency and performance of LEDs by 50 %. Project results have been published in two peer-reviewed journals.
Thermal management, LEDs, heat pipes, KTTM-OPPUP, ultra-thin heat pipes