The demand for high power density, therefore high heat dissipation, power electronics modules is propelled by applications such as hybrid transportation and asynchronous power generation, among others. Besides a low thermal resistance, these applications require high thermal capacitance to manage transient operations.
The Package Integrated Cyclone COoler (PICCO) is an additively manufactured, thermal energy storing cooler codesigned by GE Research (GRC) in collaboration with the US Army Research Lab (ARL). The key aspect of PICCO is its capability to swirl a two-phase coolant, i.e. liquid-gas. The centrifugal field creates a radial pressure gradient inducing buoyancy. The strong radial acceleration to which the fluid is subject forces relatively cold flow outward to reach the hot wall, thus boosting the heat transfer, while hot flow and bubbles migrate inward and the two-phase system is nearly isothermal (thermal storage).
The proposed study models the swirled flow in terms of liquid film heat conductance and critical heat flux predictions. The resulting heat transfer coefficient can be applied to the walls of the cyclone and used as a boundary condition for the heat conduction problem through the cyclone wall and the module layers.