Congratulations to Dr. Sajad Alimohammadi and Dr. Tim Persoons for winning the
Sajad Alimohammadi and Tim Persoons
Dr. Sajad Alimohammadi is Lecturer in TU Dublin and a former PhD student and postdoctoral research fellow in Dr. Tim Persoons' research group in the Dept. of Mechanical, Manufacturing & Biomedical Engineering (MMBE) at Trinity College Dublin. Dr. Tim Persoons is Associate Professor in MMBE and Visiting Faculty in the NSF I/UCRC Cooling Technologies Research Center (CTRC) at Purdue University which funded the initial underlying research behind this work.
The Harvey Rosten Award for Excellence is awarded annually in recognition of achievements in the field of thermal analysis of electronics equipment, and the thermal modelling of electronics parts and packages. Its aims are to encourage innovation and excellence in these fields. The Award commemorates the achievements of Harvey Rosten, who co-founded Flomerics in 1989, oversaw the development of the FloTHERM solver and pioneered compact thermal modelling of electronics components. The 2020 Award will be formally presented at the 2022 SEMI-THERM Symposium.
The winning paper entitled “A novel linear air amplifier technology to replace rotary fans in data center server rack cooling” was presented at the 26th International Workshop on Thermal Investigations of ICs and Systems (THERMINIC), 23-25 September 2020, Berlin, Germany (virtual) . It focused on the development and evaluation of a linear air amplifier which could be a more reliable alternative to rotary fans for cooling data centre servers. Especially in cases when low-pressure compressed air is available, this technology could save both energy and maintenance costs.
The experimental validation work for this project involved the design and fabrication of a modular test facility with an adjustable prototype air amplifier, which was done with the assistance of Gordon O'Brien, Chief Technical Officer Specialist in the Dept. of Mechanical, Manufacturing & Biomedical Engineering. Both Gordon and Eoin Oude Essink (PhD student supervised by Sajad, Tim and Xiangjie Chen of Loughborough University) are involved in ongoing research on this same topic. A new air amplifier prototype will enable a more accurate characterisation of the device performance and flow velocity measurements.
Dr. Persoons says, “This project came about following conversations with Intel’s data centre design team, as they were looking for solid-state alternatives to traditional rotary fans for server cooling applications. Fan failures are unpredictable, and because modern data centre systems operate close to thermal limits, this requires immediate maintenance. Fans also contribute to the overall energy use of data centres, and cause high levels of acoustic noise which makes for challenging working conditions. Sajad and I are extremely grateful and honoured for the recognition of our work by the 2020 Harvey Rosten Award for Excellence. We could not have done this without our collaborators in Intel and Trinity, and the financial support from CTRC at Purdue University.”
Dr. Alimohammadi says, “It is the honour of my career to be the winner of the 2020 Harvey Rosten Award for Excellence together with Prof. Persoons. Looking at the list of previous recipients of this award, I come across a great number of scientists and researchers that I had looked up to as a role models in my career from the early stages when I started my research in this field more than a decade ago. The need for radical innovation in compact electronics thermal management technologies is a well-recognised bottleneck for the further expansion of data centre infrastructure in Ireland and around the globe. We are delighted to see this novel device identified by the selection committee of the award and electronics cooling community. I would like to wholeheartedly thank all colleagues and researchers who have contributed to this work, and indeed this is an award to them as well.”
Past recipients of the Harvey Rosten Award for Excellence include Prof. Suresh V. Garimella (Purdue University, University of Vermont), Prof. Alfonso Ortega (Villanova University), Dr. Bruno Michel and Dr. Thomas Brunschwiler (IBM), Prof. Ari Glezer (Georgia Tech), Prof. Peter Raad (Southern Methodist University), Ir. Clemens Lasance (Philips Research) and others.
This research was carried out with the support of several collaborators in Intel and Trinity College Dublin, including Quentin Pelletier, Gordon O’Brien, John Kennedy, Gerry Byrne, Molly Kenny, Conor Morrow, Manoj Goyal and others. The work was financially supported by the NSF I/UCRC Cooling Technologies Research Center (CTRC) at Purdue University and the Irish Research Council (IRC) under grant number GOIPD/2016/216. The recipients also gratefully acknowledge the DJEI/DES/SFI/HEA Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC) for the provision of computational facilities and support.
 S. Alimohammadi and T. Persoons, "A Novel Linear Air Amplifier Technology to Replace Rotary Fans in Data Center Server Rack Cooling," 2020 26th International Workshop on Thermal Investigations of ICs and Systems (THERMINIC), Berlin, Germany (virtual), 23-25 September 2020, pp. 1-6, doi: 10.1109/THERMINIC49743.2020.9420492, TARA: http://hdl.handle.net/2262/96638.