Two-phase microchannel heat sink is promising in cooling high power electronics with dielectric fluids. Compared to water, dielectric fluids can assure system safety in case of working fluid leakage. However, two-phase heat transfer of these hydrofluorocarbon refrigerants is restricted by their relatively low thermal conductivities and low latent heats. Numerous nanoscale/submicron structures have been developed to enhance the single and two-phase heat transfer in microchannels; but these techniques usually require nanoparticle seeds in multi-step wet processes or nanolithography to integrate these nanostructures. Therefore, most of these techniques were time-consuming and costly. In this study, we present a plasma etching method using a modified Bosch process to create silicon tips with nanoscale scallops in microchannels. This is a rapid and cost-effective method to integrate large density of nucleation sites without involving nanolithography method or using nanoparticle seeds. Then, these silicon tip arrays were aligned with side walls of microchannels. As a result, flow boiling heat transfer of a dielectric refrigerant, HFE-7000, is substantially enhanced in a microchannel heat sink (five parallel channels: 10 mm L × 220 μm W × 250 μm H). Compared to plain-wall microchannels, the average junction temperature can be reduced up to 10 °C at a heat flux of 55 W/cm2 and the equivalent thermal resistance of microchannel heat sink is reduced up to 31% at a mass flux of 1018 kg/m2·s.

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