MIT Develops a Cooling Technology of the Future

In terms of cooling, we presently use our massive (and impressive-looking) heatsinks made of heat-conductive metals all in hopes of drawing as much heat as possible away from our chips.

Researchers at MIT have made a notable breakthrough in transforming polyethylene, the most widely used polymer, into a material that conducts heat just as well as most metals while retaining its properties as an electrical insulator.

Another special property of this transformed polyethylene is that it conducts heat very efficiently in just one direction, which makes it highly suitable for cooling a computer chip.

While discoveries such as this are often in an infancy stage that makes it just dream material for computer enthusiasts, the added promise in this latest breakthrough is recognition and interest from Intel.

Ravi Prasher, an engineer at Intel, took notice of the work and characterized the researchers' work as "phenomenal," and added that "this is a very significant finding."

Read more at MIT.

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  • XD_dued
    Impressive. Lighter too?
    23
  • sheath
    shadow187But how cheap is it to produce in mass-quantities?


    Its polyethylene, it cant be that expensive.
    21
  • shadow187
    But how cheap is it to produce in mass-quantities?
    20
  • Other Comments
  • XD_dued
    Impressive. Lighter too?
    23
  • shadow187
    But how cheap is it to produce in mass-quantities?
    20
  • jrharbort
    This has me quite curious. I'm wondering how something like this would perform after long term use. Most common plastics get very brittle and break (or even melt) after being exposed to a heat source for too long.

    On the plus, it should be cheaper to produce than copper/aluminum based coolers.
    5