Numerical simulation on a compact thermoelectric cooler for the optimized design
Author(s): Tingrui Gonga,b,⁎ , Lei Gaoa,b , Yongjia Wuc , Long Zhanga,b , Shan Yina,b , Juntao Lia,b, Tingzhen Ming
Source: Applied Thermal Engineering 146 (2019) 815–825. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.applthermaleng.2018.10.047
Keywords:Thermoelectric cooler, Contact layer resistance, Cooling performance, Operation reliability, Optimized design
Abstract: Nowadays electronic devices’ increasing in power density and shrinking in size make it hard to remove the heat. The resulting uneven energy dissipation and high local heat flflux density create hotspots that deteriorate the thermal environment. The thermoelectric cooler (TEC) is a promising solid-state heat pump that utilizes the Peltier effffect to dissipate the heat and eliminate the hotspots of the electronic devices. In this article, three-dimensional numerical simulations have been performed for the optimization design of a compact TEC using finite element method, which take into account the temperature-dependent materials properties, Thomson effect, and the contact layer resistances. The optimization includes the input current, leg geometry, and contact layers, with which the TEC achieves the maximum cooling performance and high operation reliability. The results show that the Joule heat generated by the input current inside the module plays a crucial role in the TEC performance and the operation reliability. The strong temperature gradient-induced reliability issue still occurs in the TEC. With the requirements for optimal performance and reliability, the optimized TEC design approach is presented in this study.
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