A universal performance chart for CPU cooling devices

Kim Choon Ng, Christopher R. Yap, Mark Aaron Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Is there a universal method by which engineers and scientists could differentiate the superior design and performance of central processing unit (CPU) coolers from one another? If there is, how would one derive or generate such parameters that span all types of CPU coolers used to-date? An ideal CPU cooling device comprises the following three key characteristics, namely, (i) high capacity for heat removal within the specified thermal design limit of CPUs, (ii) low active power (electricity) consumption, and (iii) compact design requiring low maintenance. The insatiable needs for fast clocking speeds of CPUs through the large scale integration of integrated circuits within a wafer has resulted in system designs with increasingly high heat generation within the wafer's footprint. The International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors has projected that CPUs would generate up to 200 Watts in the near future. Considering these various aspects and the key role of CPU coolers, this paper is proposing a Figure of Merit and a performance chart to aide in comparing their design and performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)651-656
Number of pages6
JournalHeat Transfer Engineering
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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