Enhanced heat transfer of heat sink channels with micro pin fin roughened walls

Taiho Yeom, Terrence Simon, Tao Zhang, Min Zhang, Mark North, Tianhong Cui

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Heat transfer and pressure drop characteristics of micro pin fin arrays in a narrow rectangular channel with an air through flow are studied with different flow rates ranging from laminar to turbulent flow. Copper micro pin fins 150-400 μm long and 75-700 μm in diameter are fabricated by microfabrication techniques. Performance ratios that compare heat transfer to pressure drop characteristics are evaluated to investigate performance of the micro pin-fin surfaces when both heat transfer and pressure drop are important. The results indicate that fluid dynamic effects generated around micro pin fins take a more dominant role for heat transfer enhancement than the area increase due to micro pin fins. A maximum heat transfer enhancement of 79% over plain surface is achieved due to a micro pin-fin surface with a height of 250 μm and a diameter of 400 μm. It is expected that the micro pin-fin surfaces can be used for improving cooling performance of fan-assisted heat sinks for electronics thermal management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)617-627
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was partially supported by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) MACE Program. The views expressed are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of Defense or the U.S. Government. Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2015 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Air flow
  • Channel flow
  • Electronics cooling
  • Heat transfer
  • Micro pin fins


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