Tube cold plates tend to be the simplest form of liquid cold plates where a joint free tube is embedded into grooved machined copper or aluminum base plate.
Dependent on the required thermal performance and the cooling fluid to be used, the tube can be copper or stainless steel and can be a simple mechanical (dry) press fit, press fit with a thermal epoxy boundary to eliminate micro voids or soldered in place for maximum thermal performance.
Cold Plates With Single and Multi Pass Tubes
The embedded tubes is a fluid outlet. This reduces the risk of any leakage but also has a graduated thermal profile, as the cooling fluid gets progressively hotter thereby presenting the last component with a different coolant temperature than the first. This drawback can be somewhat reduced by constructing a Multi-Pass design where the cooling fluid is looped back through the cold plate or a separate fluid feed can travel in the opposite direction to the first. Another method of improving the thermal profile offered to all components is to design a tube in plate cold plate with inlet and outlet headers. This divides the incoming cooling fluid into parallel tubes that offer a much more even thermal profile.
Cold Plates with Concealed Tubes
Alternatively the tube can be embedded further into the base so that it cools devices mounted on both sides of the plate. The tube is not exposed to external elements, with an epoxy layer to provide additional protection for any leakage. This option provides greater flexibility, but the thermal performance is limited because of the surface area of the tube perimeter.
Cold Plates with Exposed Tubes
The tube can be placed toward the top surface of the base. This provides better cooling to devices mounted on that surface as it is in direct contact with the power device. With less thermal interfaces between the fluid and the power device, the application will see an increase in the performance for the application.
Cold Plate Construction
Plates with Flat Copper Tubes
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