ADVANCED PACKAGING AND THERMAL MANAGEMENT OF DC-DC CONVERTERS AND NOVEL CORRELATIONS FOR MANIFOLD MICROCHANNEL HEATSINKS
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An advanced packaging configuration of a dual-active-bridge 10 kW DC-DC converter module is introduced in this dissertation. Through utilization of novel heatsinks for the power switches and the transformer assembly, ~20 kW/Lit converter volumetric power density based on numerical and experimental analysis is obtained. Through a unique placement of the high power/high frequency SiC switches on the printed circuit board, many beneficial features such as double-sided cooling, complete elimination of wirebonding, and circumvention of the need for TIM layers between the switches and the heatsinks, and multi functioning heatsinks as electrical busbars is achieved. A Vertically Enhanced Manifold Microchannel System (VEMMS) cooler is developed to address the thermal challenges of a pair of power switches, simultaneously. Both air and liquid cooled versions of VEMMS cooler is presented, thermal resistances of 1.1 K/W and 0.3 K/W for the air and liquid cooled versions, respectively, at reasonable flow rates and pressure drops was obtained. Besides the power switches, thermal management of the transformer assembly is accomplished via Combined Core and Coil (C3) Coolers, where both the magnetic core and coils are liquid cooled simultaneously with electrically insulating but thermally conductive 3D printed Alumina heatsinks, where thermal resistances as low as 0.3 K/W for the magnetic core and 0.09 K/W for the transformer windings is experimentally demonstrated. Furthermore, a system level model was built to investigate the effect of various components in the cooling loop on each other, and what are the limiting factors to prevent a possible thermal runaway failure. Lastly, using a metamodeling approach, closed form pressure drop and heat transfer correlations are developed for thermo-fluidic performance prediction of manifold microchannel heatsinks. Due to complexity and vastness of design variables present in manifold microchannel systems, adequate CFD analysis and optimization require significant computational power. Through utilization of the developed correlations, orders of magnitude reduction in computational time (from days to milliseconds) in prediction of pressure drop and heat transfer coefficient is demonstrated. Extensive mesh independence and residual convergence algorithms are developed to increase accuracy of the created database. Between the correlation and mesh independent CFD results, a mean error of 3.9% and max error of 24% for Nusselt number, and a mean error of 4.6% and max error of 37% for Poiseuille Number predictions are achieved.