Parallel optical interconnects (POIs) offer capacity advantages for high-density telecomm requirements. Once an array of multi-channel, high-capacity POIs is placed on a board, shelf or telecom rack, it creates a challenging thermal management task. To develop a thermal management concept for high dissipating racks (over 10 kW), capable of keeping a maximum temperature of 80°C for optical components, with tight temperature uniformity requirements of ±1°C between a receiver (Rx) and transmitter (Tx), a fully functional two-shelf telecommunication rack has been built. A thermal management solution was proposed and was based on the implementation of heat pipes embedded into each board. The performance of embedded heat pipes is characterized for densely packaged, high-speed optics applications requiring temperature uniformity and stringent temperature limits. The proposed solution completely meets requirements of power-dense, high speed POIs at the board/shelf level for the typical telecommunication rack. Moreover, it evolves into an enabling strategy for the reliable control of power-dense, temperature-sensitive optical components.

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