In the present work, horizontal-base pin fin heat sinks exposed to free convection in air are studied. They are made of aluminum, and there is no contact resistance between the base and the fins. For the same base dimensions the fin height and pitch vary. The fins have a constant square cross-section. The edges of the sink are blocked: the surrounding insulation is flush with the fin tips. The effect of fin height and pitch on the performance of the sink is studied experimentally and numerically. In the experiments, the heat sinks are heated using foil electrical heaters. The heat input is set, and temperatures of the base and fins are measured. In the corresponding numerical study, the sinks and their environment are modeled using the Fluent 6 software. The results show that heat transfer enhancement due to the fins is not monotonic. The differences between sparsely and densely populated sinks are analyzed for various fin heights. Also assessed are effects of the blocked edges as compared to the previously studied cases where the sink edges were exposed to the surroundings.

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