Print 70 comment(s) - last by nyarrgh.. on Apr 9 at 5:27 PM

Closeup of Solid State Fan  (Source: Dan Schlitz and Vishal Singhal, Thorrn Micro Technologies)

Chart Showing solid Stat Fan vs. Traditional Fans  (Source: Thorrn Micro Technologies)
Researcher says the solid-state fan is the biggest improvement in cooling since the heat pipe

Many computer enthusiasts understand that how fast a processor runs is in part dependent on how well the chip can be cooled. This is why record-setting benchmark runs are typically made with processors cooled by exotic means.

Cooling is just as important for mobile systems like notebook computers and other portable electronics. The size of the fan required for the system can affect how small devices can be built. A pair of engineers from Thorrn Micro Technologies Inc, Dan Schlitz and Vishal Singhal, have developed a new solid-state fan that works similarly to household air purifiers.

The resulting fan is the most powerful and energy efficient fan of its size and moves more air than fans that are 35 times its size. The RSD5 solid-state fan is described by Singhal as, “One of the most significant advancements in electronics cooling since heat pipes. It could change the cooling paradigm for mobile electronics.”

The device operates thanks to a phenomenon called corona wind. This corona wind is created by placing a series of live wires within uncharged conducting plates contoured into half cylinders, partially enveloping the wires. The live wires generate micro-scale plasma that conducts electricity.

The corona wind is created within the intense electrical field that results from the configuration of the wires and the conducting plates. The researchers say they were able to control the micro-scale discharge to produce maximum airflow without risk of arcing or sparks which could prove catastrophic to electronic devices [Video].

Schlitz says, “The technology has the power to cool a 25-watt chip with a device smaller than 1 cubic-cm and can someday be integrated into silicon to make self-cooling chips.”

MSI has also been working on more efficient ways to cool electronic components as well. DailyTech reported in February that MSI had announced a new ECOlution chipset cooler that operates on the Stirling Engine Theory.

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By Polynikes on 3/19/2008 4:24:07 PM , Rating: 5
That's pretty frickin' cool.

RE: Wow
By FITCamaro on 3/19/2008 4:27:39 PM , Rating: 5
It sounds pretty freaking cool. Lets see how it works now. And how much it costs.

RE: Wow
By Paratus on 3/19/2008 4:33:11 PM , Rating: 5
Is that Ozone I smell?

RE: Wow
By Inkjammer on 3/19/2008 4:51:38 PM , Rating: 5
No, just a twitch gamer's $5,500 Dell XPS M1730 catching fire because the fanless cooler melted like an icecube and fused to the motherboard.

RE: Wow
By othercents on 3/19/08, Rating: -1
RE: Wow
By sprockkets on 3/19/2008 6:14:18 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, a valid question. This device must produce it, and perhaps in high quantities too. Those purifiers from Sharper Image put out nasty quantities of ozone.

RE: Wow
By noirsoft on 3/19/2008 6:52:19 PM , Rating: 1
My laptop crashes hard (corrupted video, lockups, etc) if I have it in a smallish room with an "ionic" air purifier going. Within 5 minutes if it's sitting only a few feet from the purifier.

I would hope that the researchers thought of how to get the charged air out of the system harmlessly when they invented this new cooler, but if not it seems potentially useless.

RE: Wow
By BladeVenom on 3/19/2008 5:32:11 PM , Rating: 5
I'm sure it works great in a clean room. What about in an average house with dust and pet hair?

RE: Wow
By CascadingDarkness on 3/24/2008 1:05:57 PM , Rating: 2
Take note if researchers involved start buying up anti-static air company stock.

Can see it now "WARNING: Failure to clean fan daily can lead to fusing of internal PC components"

RE: Wow
By walk2k on 3/19/2008 5:00:28 PM , Rating: 1
sounds like it uses a crapload of electricity (arcing??

not exactly what you want in a desktop - completely out of the question in a portable.

RE: Wow
By Cogman on 3/19/2008 5:40:28 PM , Rating: 5
I don't believe so, if they are to be believed, "The resulting fan is the most powerful and energy efficient fan of its size and moves more air than fans that are 35 times its size."

Humm, now that I'm reading that, that could mean that it has a huge power requirement (even though it uses power more efficiently). I guess this all depends on scalability, if these things can become sufficiently small without sacrificing air movement.

The other question we should be asking is, How do these things handle cat hair, dust, and vomit?

RE: Wow
By Sulphademus on 3/20/2008 8:20:25 AM , Rating: 5
You cant dust for vomit.

And why are you puking on your laptop anyways?
Aim for the trashcan!

RE: Wow
By TAllenSr on 3/28/2008 10:04:56 AM , Rating: 2
In fact, it was someone else's vomit, but they don't know exactly whose vomit it was. They, they don't have the technology at Scotland Yard to... you know, find out for sure or anything.

RE: Wow
By AstroCreep on 3/19/2008 6:27:42 PM , Rating: 2 that a pun I detect? :p

RE: Wow
By captchaos2 on 3/19/2008 10:39:07 PM , Rating: 3
How much of a bump can it take before you get an electric arc and a fried chip?

RE: Wow
By nyarrgh on 4/9/2008 5:27:54 PM , Rating: 2
well, if it spits out enough ozone, you can use it in conjunction with freon for cooling and it should all balance out...

Sorry... couldn't resist.

"I f***ing cannot play Halo 2 multiplayer. I cannot do it." -- Bungie Technical Lead Chris Butcher
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