example, a passive heat sink reaching the parity level at 75 Watts
of power will be a foot-by-a-foot area and weigh 40 pounds.
Compare this to an active cooling device that may be 25 percent
of the size and significantly more expensive. It’s smart to evaluate both and figure out what works best in your environment.”
Paul also notes power as a determining factor – using COB technology becomes much more difficult with passive cooling above
approximately 50 Watts, although a highly engineered product
– heat sinks that have creative configurations or special materials
– can employ passive cooling at higher Watts.
If you decide on an active cooling strategy, fans
alone are no longer the most obvious choice. More
vendors are coupling fans with heat sinks to create
specialized cooling devices. Even traditional heat
sinks are becoming active by adding vibratory
features to dissipate heat.
One of the exciting advances in active cooling
is the synthetic jet, such as a module offered
by Nuventix. The SynJet device is based on an
oscillating diagram that creates a turbulent airflow
which then pulls air within its wake, further
If you decide on an active cooling
strategy, fans alone are no longer the
most obvious choice.
of these active cooling heat sinks.” He adds, “As a distributor we
view ourselves as a platform where we organize information and
products in such a way that it makes it easier for our customers.
So it comes down to narrowing selection and making associations
that gets them to design and to market faster.”
Finally, be sure to take advantage of the design assistance offered
by the solid state lighting vendors. “We’ve got a team of incredible
applications engineers that can answer questions and quickly move
you from a concept to a working design,” says Jones. “We love to
collaborate and help people accomplish their goals.”
increasing the airflow while improving heat
transfer out of the heat sink. The air from the wake
then “sweeps” the hot air out of the system. Lee
Jones of Nuventix asserts synthetic jet cooling is
particularly appropriate to designers who need the
flexibility to control the junction temperature in
their product while incorporating less metal. As for
aesthetics, he says “you aren’t tied to a big clunky
heat sink – you can trim it, shape it and sculpt it,
to make something special.”
Another cooling strategy manufacturers may
wish to consider is the housing itself. Brandon
Noska says, “A new housing can more effectively
be used as a thermal management component rather
than trying to force fit a LED source into a fixture
that is not designed for thermal management.
Usually you can get a smaller footprint that is more
FULL METAL VALUE
Our Challenger line
of rack enclosures is a value leader,
built in the U.S. to the same quality standards as
our heavy-duty enclosures. It can more than
handle the majority of commercial applications
and be customized to suit special needs.
; All welded construction minimizes twist, sway
; Universal side panels can either be securely
fastened from inside the cabinet to prevent
tampering or easily lifted off externally
; Choose flush mount doors with lift-off hinges
or face-mount doors – all with positive latching
hardware as a standard feature
; Vertical racks, sloped-front consoles ( 15 degree), double-slope consoles
( 30 and 45 degree), low-profile frames and bench-top racks
Don’t forget your partners
The number of solid state lighting parts and vendors can be overwhelming. Digi-Key, for example,
is trying to address this by creating more reference
designs using the myriad different parts from which
the designer must choose. Speaking of Nuventix,
Paul says, “We’re trying to put together reference
designs for specific applications that pull together
a COB LED, certain drivers that push the limit in
terms of lumen output, and try to cool it with some
www.ECNmag.com • 06/2013
An exceptionally wide range of accessories are available. Choose from
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Learn more now at EquiptoElec.com or call us.
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