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Planning a TEC Water-Chilling System.

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
OK, first of all I have been pondering this idea for a few months now, improving this tossing that and such. My idea is run one possibly two 245w peltier's (hot side and cold side included) at 12v (Roughly making it a 195w TEC) on a single loop with a Q6600 and one to two 8800 gtx's in addition to two 240mm radiator's. (all of this will be in separate case than my computer.)

Second, to all those reading this I would just like to let you know I know that this will be a bit costly, but I just wanted to let you know that I know.

Thirdly, my main goal for this system is to,
A. Be able to cool independently from the Tec's (So I can leave my computer on and not have it fry if the Peltier's fail.) B. Have the ability to turn off the Tec's while PC is not under load (less power used and no frost while idle.) and C. Be quiet (25db or less.)

Any tips, hints or any other advice is welcome and encouraged.
Edited by Ubiquitous - 9/21/08 at 2:41am
post #2 of 29
Make sure you start a buid log

While you said it would be a little bit costly, it would be a good idea to compare the total cost of the TEC system, versus an off the shelf aquarium cooler.
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post #3 of 29
Quote:
Thirdly, my main goal for this system is to,
A. Be able to cool independently from the Tec's (So I can leave my computer on and not have it fry if the Peltier's fail.) B. Have the ability to turn off the Tec's while PC is not under load (less power used and no frost while idle.) and C. Be quiet (25db or less.)
How are you going to mount them? If they are direct die and you power them off the TEC will act as a insulter and prevent the chip from being cooled by the WC lop..

Or are you thinking of making a in-line chiller type thing?

EDIT:Never mind I read the title....In-line TEC chillers don't really work very well, at least none that I've seen so far..Not to discourage you, I'd like to see one that works, but most end up costing to much and only knocking off a C or 2, thats not much when compared to how much electricity they use..I direct TEC cool and its none to efficient that way...
Edited by ira-k - 9/21/08 at 9:30am
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post #4 of 29
Firstly I havent checked but I believe 245W is the total wattage expelled (i.e. includes the wattage of the actual TEC.) so the heat pumped by the unit will be less and so the heat pumped when it's undervolted will be proportionally smaller too.

Secondly since you said you wish to undervolt to 12v I am assuming you plan to power the TEC from the PC power supply. Well...that's a no,no. first you could quite easily exceed the wattage rating of the PSU and due to the fact that molex's arent really rated above 6A (I believe) you will probably have to cut the molex off and solder the TEC power connections....additionally, for safety, you will need to use additional lines if you only use one there is fire potential. Incidently the TEC should be the only thing on the lines.
In a well fixed up rig most people havent got more than one line available.
SO you really should have an independant PSU for the TEC

Thirdly If I am right about the wattage (or as it happens even if I am wrong !!) it will little effect on the temp of the water cooling with a CPU and 2 GPU's. It will cool the loop but more than likely no where near as much as your expecting.

Finally...I am really sorry about shooting down your plans here...you will need an additional water cooling system to cool the hot side of the TEC. You cannot passively cool a TEC.

There are one or two other considerations i.e. noise (of cooling fans -2 cooling loops.) ,condensation the TEC will easily go below ambient without some sort of controller etc, etc BUT I fear I have already pooped on you too much.

TEC setups can work but they require rather more consideration than most initially give it. TEC's are very cheap and easy to connect but it is all the backup stuff to get them to work properly and efficiently that stumps people.
Edited by zipdogso - 9/21/08 at 3:07pm
post #5 of 29
Thread Starter 
From all the research that I have done on TEC's, I have come to the understanding that the peltier unit is quite literally a "heat-pump" (X amount of degrees C transferred from the cold side to the hot side) and that Temp difference from one side to another never changes (barring changing the volts etc...) Also Peltier's never work efficiently at full load. But since that temp never changes the cooler you keep the hot side the cooler the cold side will be, If any know any different please let me know.

Now for some more details on how I am planning on achieving these goals that I have set for my project.

Firstly, I am going to use a Meanwell S-320-12 Power supply for each (if I use two) Pelier unit. This power supply has 25 amps (More than enough) and is adjustable @ 10V-13V.

Secondly, It will be a full water cooling system (2 240mm Radiators, Adjustable speed pump, waterblocks, etc...) being able to approximately capable of keeping everything I want cool around (guessing) 35C-40C, so that If my project does happen to fail (I don't think it will) I'll at least have a water cooling system to use out of it.

Third, I am going to run the hoses as follows (any tips are wanted) Pump, Waterblocks inside PC, Hot side of TEC, through the two radiators, Cold side of TEC, Pump, Waterblocks inside PC, etc... I might also have the water go from the PC components through one radiator then cool the hot side then go through the cold side. I'll have to just play around with it Whenever I do choose to buy the parts.

As you might see I am aiming for adjustable so I can get the most out of this build.

Any ideas, tips or just commenting on what you think of my plan so far are welcome
post #6 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ubiquitous View Post
From all the research that I have done on TEC's, I have come to the understanding that the peltier unit is quite literally a "heat-pump" (X amount of degrees C transferred from the cold side to the hot side) and that Temp difference from one side to another never changes (barring changing the volts etc...) Also Peltier's never work efficiently at full load. But since that temp never changes the cooler you keep the hot side the cooler the cold side will be, If any know any different please let me know.
Im not sure your understanding of TEC is correct but it might just be my understanding of what you've written.

dTmax
This is the maximum temperature difference between the hot side and the cold side when no load is applied to the cold side and the hot side is kept at the rated temperature.

Qmax
This is the maximum heat transferred between the two sides of the TEC at Umax, at the rated temperature. When a heat load of Qmax is applied to a TEC the dT = 0 not dTmax


TEC's dont pump "degress C" they pump watts of heat. This heat load will effect the Td of the two sides achieved


Cooling the Hot side by an extra 10 degrees does not mean the cold side is decreased by 10c in fact it is less than the 10c . Umax Imax Qmax dTmax all DECREASE as the Th temp is reduced.
post #7 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by zipdogso View Post
Firstly I havent checked but I believe 245W is the total wattage expelled (i.e. includes the wattage of the actual TEC.) so the heat pumped by the unit will be less and so the heat pumped when it's undervolted will be proportionally smaller too.
That depends on what "watts" hes talking about if its Qmax then thats the max of heat moved at the given hot side temp

If it's Pmax than thats the max amount of electricity used to move a heat load of Qmax. Pmax will be about 3.2 time more than Qmax. Ebay people love to sell their TEC's based on Pmax as they seem more powerful
post #8 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ubiquitous View Post

Third, I am going to run the hoses as follows (any tips are wanted) Pump, Waterblocks inside PC, Hot side of TEC, through the two radiators, Cold side of TEC, Pump, Waterblocks inside PC, etc... I might also have the water go from the PC components through one radiator then cool the hot side then go through the cold side. I'll have to just play around with it Whenever I do choose to buy the parts.
i've just read this again and what your suggesting is impossible if i understand you correctly

Your suggesting the same water will be flowing past the hot and cold side of the TEC's ? if so your TEC's will turn into a massive heater.

You have to cool the hot side of the TECs with a separate and completely independent loop
post #9 of 29
Oh dear.......

Ubiquitous....now you have spelled out your intentions, I suggest you stop the project for now till your knowledge expands somewhat.

As muffy says if we have read your intentions correctly and I believe we have what your planning is ridiculous and you have a misguided notion of how to use TEC's. I don't know how you arrived at this application of them because it has never been suggested before and there are loads of threads and stickies on forums on the basic setup required for a TEC, you obviously havent read them or if you have you didn't understand the discussion.

That said you are not alone very few really understand how TEC's work and how to efficiently integrate into a PC...it is after all not a use they were intended for.
You need to do a bit more reading bro'

I was tempted to provide some ideas on the correct setup here for instance as I originally mentioned you need two cooling loops for starters 1 for the TEC and one for your components....But I am afraid really I don't think you have grasp of the subject of TEC's yet...I advise you use the search option on this forum to find the "TEC setup" or something similar and read the posts. You could also go to Xtremesystems (dont bother registering unless you are ultra patient...registration takes weeks..months even. You can view posts just cant ask questions without registering) the TEC section there has far more flow than this forum.
Edited by zipdogso - 9/21/08 at 3:02pm
post #10 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by zipdogso View Post
....additionally, for safety, you will need to use additional lines
Actually I got that wrong you need to use a PCI-e connector and bunch all the wires of the same colour together or if you can get a female socket you can wire it up to get the same result but much neater.

The PCI-e line has a much higher rating and so do the plugs

Wiring different lines together is a safety hazard as well and wont get the required result. Somewhere I read the TECH guys at PPC recommend wiring together multiple PCI-e lines but again I am not sure this is a good idea either.

And the current limit on a molex is 7A not 6.

As the OP is using a meanwell for power the above doesn't really concern this but I wanted to correct my earlier post.
Edited by zipdogso - 9/21/08 at 3:46pm
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