Anyone have experience with heat pipes?

Anyone have experience with real heat pipes (not some wax filled heatsink)? Example, something from:
I need a cooling solution that will fit in a 2U rack size space that will keep a 1.33 Athlon (or greater) under 25c above ambient. It will be used in an industrial environment so it has to be reliable and easy to maintain (no water cooling). The application will be using 100% of the cpu 24/7 (or about 80-90% of a 1.5gig). Maybe this will be moot in a few months when the Palomino cores come out...
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  1. I've seen those heat pipe structures before, and I've always wanted to play with one :)

    Heat pipes operate on two phase heat transfer - liquid at vapor pressure vaporizes from source heat inside the pipe, transferring that energy to any cooler surface along the walls when it condenses, giving the heatsink a massive heat transfer area to work with. These kinds of heatsinks are made to deal with high heat output processors, and if you look at their heat pipe tower, their main goal was the cooling of a 110 watt processor module. That should definately be sufficient for what you have in mind, considering the 1.33 is rated in the 70's for watt output.... and if you were planning to use one of the palominos, there would be even less concern.
  2. MaximumPC published a heat pipe how-to article in January 2001. It looked interesting but complicated to assemble, requiring case modifications and copper tubing fitting (essentially plumbing skills).

    They built it for a P3-600. It worked and was more effective than the stock HSF but there were no hard numbers describing how much cooling it provided. Furthermore, they did not describe how to go about selecting the size of heat exchangers. This is very important information. There is a big difference between cooling a P3-600 and Athlon 1.33.

    I just checked the MaximumPC website. Unfortunately, they have not posted an electronic reprint of the article. However, I'm sure back-issues are available if you want to read it.

    From what I saw it would not be likely to find something like this as a kit. There is just too much custom fitting required.
  3. amdy: Here is a link of a gguy that did some of his own heat pipe work and fabrication. If I recall the results he got were not all that impressive. I'm not sure if this is waht you are looking for, but it might give you a start. Here are at least 3 articles here, so look around the web site a bit.

    I think a good air cooler (with blowholes etc.) would be a better way to go.



    <font color=blue>You don't know what it is, but it's there. Like a splinter in your mind.</font color=blue>
  4. Nice link. :smile:
  5. You might look at some of the 1U rackmount set ups for the dual athlons. Here's a <A HREF="" target="_new">link</A>. Check out the product brochure for some pics.

    Basically, the heatsink on the chip(s) doesn't have a fan mounted directly to it. Instead, the HS appears to go all the way to the top of the case, and then they blow a massive amount of air through the case.

    This probably wouldn't work as well in a 2U case, cuz there is more room for the air to go around/over the HS instead of through it. You may have other requirements that won't work in a 1U case though.

    I'm not suggesting you need/want to go dual, just thought the cooling arrangement was interesting.

    <i>Cognite Tute</i>
    (Think for Yourself)
  6. I like the big heatsinks and multiple fans... (and I think the heat pipe link is cool)
    The main thing I was looking for is to eliminate single point failure with the main point being the single CPU fan. A heat pipe would get the heat out to where it could be dealt with by multiple fans, or a large heat sink with multiple fans would be OK. My current solution is an FOP32 with two fans mounted on it side by side. It doesnt drop the temp but now I can monitor both fans and alarm to replace one of them if it fails. It wont overtemp with one of them running. Since the rack may be mounted vertically I don't think I can spec heat pipes since they are position sensitive. I have several 1.33s and various heatsinks (size is a consideration in a 2U rack) so testing continues...
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