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Modular micropump fluidic systems: For system requiring ultrareliability, high performance and a compact design

Mon, 05/08/2023 - 18:05
Start Date: 
End Date: 
Programme Reference: 
ETD 2020-07-c
University of Limerick

Due to the ongoing miniaturisation and increased performance of electronics devices, alternative cooling methods are required, specifically mechanical pumping loops (MPL). Passive two-phase loops are not capable of cooling ESA's expected power densities up to 300 W/m2, so pumped two-phase loops are forecasted to replace their passive counterparts. According to Lapensée et al., “the most important component of a MPL is the pump and a pump failure directly results in MPL system failure, a reliable pump is therefore of vital importance". Wits et al. noted that in addition to a reliability of >20 years, the micro-pump is required to withstand a working pressure of 60 bar, and to achieve a minimum flow rate of 5 ml/min. In this activity, the University of Limerick developed an ultra-reliable magnetic shuttle pump (MSP) features a two counter-wound solenoid coils, which are used to oscillate a neodymium shuttle magnet. As part of the project, a manifold of five pumps in parallel and a flowmeter were integrated into a flow control unit that can withstand high working pressures (> 60 bar) and the harsh vibrations involved in space applications. Such flow control unit was finally used in a two-phase MPL demonstrator to show the feasibility of the integration.

Application Domain: 
Generic Technologies
Technology Domain: 
21 - Thermal
Competence Domain: 
2-Structures, Mechanisms, Materials, Thermal
Mechanical Pumping Loop
magnetic shuttle pump
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