Liquid Cooling and Cooligy

Discussion in 'MacRumors News Discussion (archive)' started by MacRumors, Feb 26, 2004.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001
    CNet provides some followup on nanotube and liquid-cooling technology.

    Specifically they mention a startup named Cooligy. According to Cooligy's vice president of marketing, they expect their liquid cooling system to be used in a "workstation" this year.

    Rumor-readers should recognize this company's name. In October 2003, Cooligy admitted to creating prototype designs using their technology for a number of companies -- including Apple. In November more specific rumors emerged of a liquid-cooled PowerBook targeted for 2004.

    Meanwhile, recent whispers have again claimed that Apple is working on liquid cooled machines for release in the near future.
  2. arn macrumors god


    Staff Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    FYI, This could all be true, true, unrelated.

  3. Grimace macrumors 68040


    Feb 17, 2003
    with Hamburglar.
    Hmmm.....I can't wait for G5 Powerbook comments to start churning....
  4. javabear90 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 7, 2003
    Houston, TX
    would this mean that they could pump water through the nano tubes?? or just use them at conducters.

    I guess this means new PowerMacs and PowerBooks tommorow!
  5. JohnGillilan macrumors regular

    Oct 12, 2003
    Los Angeles
    This could only mean one thing . . .

    apple tablet/pda next tuesday
  6. nmcphers macrumors newbie

    Dec 30, 2003
    Not Apple workstation

    Apple won't have any "workstation" that requires cooling. It will most likely be the 3.4 GHz Prescott...duh! That's hot!
  7. jnasato macrumors regular


    Jan 7, 2004
    I don't know the reliability of liquid cooling in the PC world, but it must suck for a tube to disconnect or some other malfunction...

    What are the benefits of liquid cooling? Lack of fan noise is understandable, but with current fan/cooling setups, the processor heat, etc., don't seem to be a problem. Does this just allow for more reliable overclocking of processors?
  8. GetSome681 macrumors regular

    Feb 2, 2002
    Lack of fan noise is not true. You use the water to suck the heat out of the cpu, yet you still need to get that heat out of the water or else it'll just constantly heat up till it approaches the temperature of the cpu, and no more cooling takes place. For this you need some type of radiator, which would need ot be cooled, and is usually by fans. It's almost exactly the same process as in your car.

    Personally, I don't know if I'd want a water cooled powerbook. If something goes wrong, it's trashed. Sure this is fine during your year warranty, but what if you accidently mishandle your powerbook, and you accidentally break the water cooling system. You system could be perfectly fine after the accident, but as soon as the cooling system breaks, the powerbook is done for. There's the possiblity for a LOT of unhappy users after their year warranty if this system was not properly implemented with this in mind.
  9. dho macrumors 6502

    Sep 7, 2003
    COOL, I hope this aides in a g5 pb coming out soon.

    Not that I will be able to get one, but cool anyway
  10. Puppies macrumors member

    Jul 1, 2003
    Yeah, the reliability issue bothers me too. And with Apple's bad luck in this area recently...

    Personally I wish they'd just make the notebooks a little thicker, if need be. The 970 isn't that hot of a chip compared to a Pentium 4-M.
  11. analogkid macrumors regular

    Jun 9, 2003
    I woudnt be surprised to see a 970fx Powerbook in the late summer in time for school, complete with liquid cooling.
    Whether they use Cooligy or just make their own design
  12. Chomolungma macrumors regular

    Jul 25, 2002
    Santa Fe, NM
    Can you provide any links to show a reliability issue with Cooligy technology? If not, lets give them the benefit of the doubt?

  13. agreenster macrumors 68000


    Dec 6, 2001
    Walt Disney Animation Studios
    This 'workstation' mention is interestingly vague.
  14. greenstork macrumors 6502a

    Jan 5, 2003
    Considering Apple has never really labeled any of their computers workstations and many other manufacturers have, I have serious doubts that the "workstation" mentioned in this rumor is an Apple.
  15. jnasato macrumors regular


    Jan 7, 2004
    I see, thanks. I thought some refrigerator type technology was being used (instead of fans).
  16. StarManta macrumors member

    Dec 10, 2003
    Columbus, OH
    Pure speculation... but a quad 2.5-GHz G5 would generate a lot of heat... seems like it would be a good system to put water cooling in.... ;-)

    It may cost $5000 but hell, I'd be savin'.....
  17. AidenShaw macrumors P6


    Feb 8, 2003
    The Peninsula
    are you kidding?

    Put the word "workstation" into the search box at, you'll see hits on "eMac Workstations", "iMac Workstations", "portable workstations" (PowerBooks), "G3 workstations", "G4 workstations"....

    The only time that Apple avoided the term "workstation" was when they wanted to falsely claim the first 64-bit desktop.... Somehow they thought people would believe that all of the 64-bit systems already sitting on desktops weren't "desktops", but "workstations".

    And if you look at Cooligy's website, they push their technology for "servers", "workstations", and SFF PCs.
  18. morkintosh macrumors regular

    Nov 25, 2003
    that’s not necessarily the case, just because it is liquid cooled doesn't mean that the liquid is water; in fact you need a lot of space to get enough water to actually cool a chip ... so powerbooks are out. The configuration in a consumer device is likely to be such that a leak would cause little to no damage.
  19. Puppies macrumors member

    Jul 1, 2003
    Except that the system wouldn't run anymore...

    It just seems strange to me that Apple would be investigating exotic cooling methods, when their systems don't generate that much heat compared to x86 systems.
  20. Telomar macrumors regular

    Aug 31, 2002
    Without going into a lesson on heat exchanger design I'll just stop at saying having a liquid cooler on the CPU does provide some benefits that an air cooled system doesn't that allows for better flexibility of design related to better heat transfer coefficients. The fans won't be removed so noise will still be present. The biggest advantage is just you can cool the CPU far more effectively though (more heat removed per second). Kind of important if you want to use hotter CPUs.

    As for reliability liquid cooling systems have been used in laptops for quite some time to distribute the heat around to areas where it is easier to cool. Most people never even realise it's there.
  21. Telomar macrumors regular

    Aug 31, 2002
    You'll find most fridges have a giant pipe network following the compressor that acts as an air cooler. Only reason the fridge doesn't need fans is because of size.
  22. spankalee macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2002
    I think the amount of liquid (water or not) in these systems is quite small. The idea is that the liquid has a very high specific heat and can be moved to an area where it's easier to cool. You still need a radiator, but since you can now put the radiator near the vents or outside the case cooling the radiator becomes much easier.

    I hope Apple uses this in the G5 tower so that they can cut down on the fans and heatsinks and offer a second optical drive bay and more HD bays. I would love to see them cut off 3" inches from the height too so I can rack mount one sideways.

    This could also work well for the iMac G5.
  23. Photorun macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2003
  24. nitropowered macrumors regular

    Aug 25, 2003
    Yes, the "liquid" does not have to be water. It can be something that does not conduct electricity. There is such thing as submerged cooling where they submerge the whole motherboard and such into a substance to wick away the heat. Don't quote me on that but I think I read about it. Maybe someone else can help clairify/verify this.

    However i wouldn't mind having a pb just a bit thicker for the G5. I really want one this summer as I will be entering college and need a pb.
  25. Stolid macrumors regular


    Jan 29, 2004
    Norfolk, VA, USA
    Liquid cooling is great because of the fact that liquids (especially water after cost considerations) absorb and give off heat at a great rate. This means its better than air at cooling 'per square X' (in, mm, whatever). Its also great because if you can get water over a spread out area than it takes less CFM from fans to cool
    If I cool a 1 square cm area with a heatsink fan I can get X watts of heat off it per second. If I use water I can spread that water's heat effectively into a large radiator, meaning that my fans are effectively cooling the same watts but over 100 square cm; the limiter is in what takes the heat from that 10 cm source -- and water absorbs faster (and therefore better) than air.
    As for reliability - I've got a water cooled PC and its lasted 4 years without any maintenence. None.
    Watercooling can be just as reliable as air cooling; 'what if you get a leak' -- the machine is hosed. 'what if your fan fails' -- the machine is hosed. More than likely for a 'sealed' solution like a powerbook the tubes will be copper (copper is another great heat transfer material, most good heatsinks today are copper, silver is better but boat loads more expensive). which means to get a leak you'll have to puncture copper tubes. If you did something to do that; I'd say that a heatpipe or hs/f solution would more than likley have major problems in that scenario too.

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