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Liquid cooled heatsinks for sustainable data centre thermal management

Research Staff

Jaakko McEvoy ([javascript protected email address])

Jaakko is currently pursuing a PhD under the supervision of Dr. Tim Persoons. He received his Master’s degree from Trinity College Dublin in 2015. He is currently working on novel liquid cooled heatsink solutions using unsteady flow and surface structuring, for next generation servers in sustainable data centres.

Principal investigator
Dr. Tim Persoons ([javascript protected email address], Tel: +353 1 896 1936)


The context for this project is the strong worldwide growth in the energy usage of data centres. Research focuses on how to increase energy efficiency of these large scale electronics thermal management systems, and how best to integrate data centre facilities in the larger energy system, e.g. to provide load balancing for the electricity grid or to reuse waste heat from the data centre for other applications.

The aim is to investigate liquid cooling techniques at the component level by means of a largely experimental study of steady and unsteady single-phase liquid flow through unstructured and meso/micro-structured heat sinks. The main target application is thermal management and heat recuperation from CPU packages in rack-mounted volume servers for data centres. The end goal is to work towards developing a novel adaptive liquid cooling solution to account for spatial and temporal heat load variations. The investigation will use computational fluid dynamics as well as advanced experimental techniques for flow visualisation, velocity field quantification, temperature and heat transfer rate measurements.

This work is part of the SFI Energy Systems Integration Partnership Programme (ESIPP) led by Prof. Mark O'Malley, Energy Institute, University College Dublin with partners in Dublin City University (DCU), Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), National University of Ireland Cork (UCC), University of Limerick (UL) and Trinity College Dublin (TCD). The research work will be carried out with strong collaborative links to major energy industry partners including EirGrid, Ervia, ESB, AIB, Glen Dimplex and more than a dozen other industry collaborators.

Funding Body

Science Foundation Ireland, Energy Institute UCD