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Seal or not to seal the cooling system?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
Is there a reason computer cooling systems are open to the atmosphere?
post #2 of 20
Yes for air/fan based cooling built so that new or cooler air is moved inside the heat build-up areas and then re-circulated to cool or released outside again by a normal push-pull or in-out systems. But for liquid/water and other compressor types closed can be ideal. Though a system or add-on for preventing condensation is a must and most system nowadays have the rads inside so it needs air/fan based cooling as well.
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post #3 of 20
Thermodynamically even closed-loop watercooling systems are still open to the atmosphere because air is drawn across the radiator blades in much the same way air is pushed through a regular system over the heatsink fins.
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post #4 of 20
Thread Starter 
Although good answers, maybe I wasn't clear enough with my first question.

Let's use the automobile as an analogy. In modern automobiles the cooling system is designed much the same as the cooling system for a PC for the exception of one (the automobile) is a sealed system and the PC systems I have seen are not.

The objective is raise the boiling point of the coolant by the use of pressure. In essence you remove as much air as possable, than have the ability to hold a predetermined amount of pressure on the system which in turn raises the boiling point.
post #5 of 20
Optimum temperature for a car engine is around 90º (to reduce component wear), optimum temperature for PC components is as cool as possible (to increase component lifespan). Two totally different cooling requirements.
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post #6 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sir Diesel View Post

Although good answers, maybe I wasn't clear enough with my first question.

Let's use the automobile as an analogy. In modern automobiles the cooling system is designed much the same as the cooling system for a PC for the exception of one (the automobile) is a sealed system and the PC systems I have seen are not.

The objective is raise the boiling point of the coolant by the use of pressure. In essence you remove as much air as possable, than have the ability to hold a predetermined amount of pressure on the system which in turn raises the boiling point.

But still, the car radiator, just as the pc radiator, is exposed to open air.
It is not possible to cool without fresh air
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post #7 of 20
Seal it. Do not worry about water expanding - this is the purpose of the reservoir, which effectively acts as an expansion vessel. Keep it open to environment and your system will soon host a variety of living creatures biggrin.gif
    
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post #8 of 20
Yeah I don't get what is meant by 'closed system'.

If the OP is referring to why computer liquid cooling systems aren't pressurized, there is zero need to increase pressure to raise the boiling point in a PC like there is in a combustion engine where the temps will normally exceed the boiling point of 100C/212F, which, if it wasn't for the use of pressure and coolants to increase the boiling point would cause a failure of the cooling system as the water turns to steam (we've likely all seen a vehicle overheating with steam pouring out from everywhere under the hood).

The whole point of liquid cooling a computer is to keep it from ever reaching temps anywhere near that high in the first place. Electrical components will not last long at temps that high.
post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sir Diesel View Post

Let's use the automobile as an analogy. In modern automobiles the cooling system is designed much the same as the cooling system for a PC for the exception of one (the automobile) is a sealed system and the PC systems I have seen are not.

Out of curiousity, which PC cooling system have you seen where the water/coolant is open to the air?
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post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 
Closed as in absence of air.

I have not bought or researched water reservoir for PC's yet, are they sealed or vented?



@ WiSK there are many examples on the net. I don't have a lot of time to put up a references, but here are some extreme examples.

http://hackedgadgets.com/2007/01/07/water-cooling-computers-with-a-swimming-pool/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z_X_hgtlJpA
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