Articles written in Sadhana
Volume 44 Issue 12 December 2019 Article ID 0234
Since the realization of microchannel devices more than three and half decades ago with water as the cooling fluid providing heat transfer enhancement, significant progress has been made to improve the cooling performance. Thermal management for electronic devices with their ever-widening user profile remains the major driving force for performance improvement in terms of miniaturisation, long-term reliability, and ease of maintenance. The ever-increasing requirement of meeting higher heat flux density in more compact and powerful electronic systems calls for further innovative solutions. Some recent studies indicate the promise offered by processes with phase change and the use of active devices. But their adoption for electronic cooling still weighs unfavourably against long-term fluid stability and simplicity of device profile with moderate to high heat transfer capability. Applications and reviews of these promising research trends have been briefly visited in this work. The main focus of this review is the flow and heat transfer regime related to electronic cooling in evolving channel forms, whose fabrication are being enabled by the significant advancement in micro-technologies. Use of disruptive wall structures like ribs, cavities, dimples, protrusions, secondary channels and other interrupts along with smooth-walled channels with curved flow passages remain the two chief geometrical innovationsenvisaged for these applications. These innovations target higher thermal enhancement factor since this implies more heat transfer capability for the same pumping power in comparison with the corresponding straight-axis,smooth-wall channel configuration. The sophistication necessary to deal with the experimental uncertainties associated with the micron-level characteristic length scale of any microchannel device delayed the availability of results that exhibited acceptable matching with numerical investigations. It is indeed encouraging that the experimental results pertaining to simple smooth channels to grooved, ribbed and curved microchannels without unreasonable increase in pumping power have shown good agreement with conventional numerical analyses based on laminar-flow conjugate heat-transfer model with no-slip boundary condition. The flow mechanism with the different disruptive structures like dimple, cavity and rib, fin and interruption, vortex generator, converging diverging side walls or curved axis are reviewed to augment the heat transfer. While the disruptions cause heattransfer enhancement by interrupting the boundary layer growth and promoting mixing by the shed vortices or secondary channel flow, the flow curvature brings in enhancement by the formation of secondary rolls culminating into chaotic advection at higher Reynolds number. Besides these revelations, the numerical studies helped in identifying the parameter ranges, promoting a particular enhancement mechanism. Also, the use of modern tools like Poincare section and the analysis of flow bifurcation leading to chaotic advection is discussed. Amongthe different disruptive structures, sidewall cavity with rib on the bottom wall within the cavity plays a significant role in augmenting the thermal performance. Among the different converging-diverging side walls or curved axis, the sinusoidal channel provides the highest mixing by the introduction of secondary vortices or deanvortices to augment the heat transfer with less pressure drop. The optimum geometry in terms of high heat transfer with low pressure plays a major role in the design of heat sink. Directions of some future research are provided at the end.