A small-scale loop heat pipe (LHP) with polypropylene (PP) wick was fabricated and tested for its thermal performance. The container and tubing of the system were made of stainless steel and several working fluids were used including methanol, ethanol, acetone, and ammonia. The heater and the evaporator were sized so that the system can be applied to a local thermal control including electronics cooling. The heating area was 35 mm × 35 mm and there were nine axial grooves in the flat evaporator (40 by 50 mm) to provide a vapor passage. The pore size of the polypropylene wick inside the evaporator was varied from 0.5 μm to 25 μm. The size of condenser was 40 mm (W) × 50 mm (L) in which ten coolant paths were provided. The inner diameters of liquid and vapor transport lines were 2.0 mm and 4.0 mm, respectively and the length of the two lines was 0.5 m each. The start-up transient as well as steady-state operation was investigated with maximum system operating temperature of 90°C, which was imposed to protect the PP from permanent deformation. The minimum thermal load of 10 W (0.8 W/cm2) and maximum thermal load of 80 W (6.5 W/cm2) were achieved using methanol as working fluid with the condenser temperature of 20°C at horizontal position. For a LHP with ammonia as working fluid, the minimum thermal load of 1 W and maximum thermal load of 87 W (7.1 W/cm2) were achieved for condenser temperature of 0°C at horizontal position. The minimum system thermal resistance was 0.65 K/W.

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