Archive for December 5th, 2010
This Peltier cooler just emerged from a pile o’ stuff on the Electronics Workbench, so I combined it with a scrap CPU heatsink (using plain old water as “thermal grease”) and fired it up to get some quick numbers for future reference.
It draws 3 A (the bench supply’s current limit) at 5 V. The cold side got down to 19 °F with the hot side at 75 °F: ΔT = 56 °F.
That’s with zero thermal load, other than whatever arrives from plain old air and those two plastic clamps. It looks like a nice one, so it’s maybe 10% efficient and could pump a watt, barely enough to cool a simple circuit.
Freezes a drop of water just fine, though.
The I-V curve is nearly bar-straight over the first five volts: call it 620 mΩ. The thing would draw 7.5 A at 12 V, call it 90 W, and could pump maybe a whopping 9 W from the cold side.
Actually getting good numbers would require some serious work that I’m not up for. In particular, everything has a serious temperature coefficient, so nothing would be the way it looks. I have doubts about the efficiency guesstimate; I’d like to actually measure that sometime.
But it confirms my opinion of Peltier coolers between hundred-watt CPUs and water-cooled heatsinks: pure delusion.