Closed-loop electroosmotic microchannel cooling system for VLSI circuits

Linan Jiang, James Mikkelsen, Jae Mo Koo, David Huber, Shuhuai Yao, Lian Zhang, Peng Zhou, James G. Maveety, Ravi Prasher, Juan G. Santiago, Thomas W. Kenny, Kenneth E. Goodson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

235 Scopus citations


The increasing heat generation rates in VLSI circuits motivate research on compact cooling technologies with low thermal resistance. This paper develops a closed-loop two-phase microchannel cooling system using electroosmotic pumping for the working fluid. The design, fabrication, and open-loop performance of the heat exchanger and pump are summarized. The silicon heat exchanger, which attaches to the test chip (1 cm2), achieves junction-fluid resistance near 0.1 K/W using 40 plasma-etched channels with hydraulic diameter of 100 μm. The electroosmotic pump, made of an ultrafine porous glass frit with working volume of 1.4 cm3, achieves maximum backpressure and flowrate of 160 KPa and 7 ml/min, respectively, using 1 mM buffered de-ionized water as working fluid. The closed-loop system removes 38 W with pump power of 2 W and junction-ambient thermal resistance near 2.5 K/W. Further research is expected to strongly reduce the thermal resistance for a given heating power by optimizing the saturation temperature, increasing the pump flowrate, eliminating the thermal grease, and optimizing the heat exchanger dimensions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)347-355
Number of pages9
JournalIEEE Transactions on Components and Packaging Technologies
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Electroosmotic pump
  • IC cooling technology
  • Microchannel heat exchanger
  • Two-phase heat transfer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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