Companies show liquid-cooled avionics enclosure able to dissipate as much heat as 100 watts per slot

LONG BEACH, Calif., 17 Jan. 2006. Two embedded computing companies and a cooling technology specialist teamed on a aircraft technology demonstration of liquid cooling of avionics architectures.

LONG BEACH, Calif., 17 Jan. 2006. Two embedded computing companies and a cooling technology specialist teamed on a aircraft technology demonstration of liquid cooling of avionics architectures.

The demonstration, at the Bus and Board Conference in Long Beach, Calif., involved a liquid-cooled air transport rack (ATR) from Hybricon Corp. in Ayer, Mass., with a digital signal processing board able to dissipate more than 90 watts of heat from VMETRO in Houston, with cooling by a heat rejection unit from the Parker Hannifin Corp. Parker Advanced Cooling Systems segment in Mentor, Ohio.

The demonstration shows that the Hybricon liquid-cooled ATR chassis is able to cool a system designed around boards that can generate as much as 100 watts of heat per slot.

The demonstration combines the latest technologies from each of the companies. Hybricon's ATR chassis is designed to power and cool high-power conduction-cooled boards that are typical in applications such as VITA 41/VXS and VITA 46.

VMETRO's Phoenix VPF1 is a VXS board with dual PowerPC MPC7447 microprocessors and dual Virtex-II Pro field programmable gate arrays. Software running on the VPF1 changes the firmware load in two FPGAs on the Phoenix VPF1 to alter the heat dissipation of the board. Using the VPF1's on-board temperature and power sensors, the software captures the temperature at the various power levels and transmits the data to a PC to be graphically displayed.

Parker's heat rejection unit is a deployable 1/2-ATR format design that supplies liquid and rejects the heat that is dissipated by the liquid-cooled ATR chassis.

While traditional conduction-cooled ATR chassis can handle boards that dissipate 20 to 40 watts per slot, today's airborne signal processing applications such as electronic warfare, ELINT, SIGINT, and electro-optical systems require higher levels of processing power, company officials say.

Liquid cooling provides more heat transfer to provide the cooling capacity that new VXS boards such as the Phoenix VPF1 require.

For more information contact Hybricon online at www.hybricon.com, VMETRO at www.vmetro.com, or Parker Hannifin at www.parker.com.

More in Computers