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Interview: Calyos 2-Phase Cooling for Electronic Components in HPC

As compute and power density increases, supercomputers require very low thermal resistance to efficiently remove processor heat. As specialists in thermal management, Calyos will showcase their innovative cooling systems at ISC’14 in Leipzig. To learn more, we caught up with Maxime Vuckovic, Head of Business Development at Calyos.

insideHPCCalyos is a thermal management company–that is fairly broad. What does the company do specifically?

Maxime Vuckovic: Calyos is a provider of advanced 2-phase cooling solutions for electronic applications. Two platform products have been developed, one is already commercialized for power modules cooling and another one has been prototyped for electronic components cooling aimed mainly at the High Performance Computing market.

Adapting its platform products designs, the company manufactures and integrates its solutions in collaboration with its industrial and corporate clients (B2B) in order to provide them with disruptive value.

insideHPCHow does the HPC world benefit from this?

Maxime Vuckovic: Thanks to the latent heat physical properties and its pumpless capillary structure, Calyos advanced 2-Phase cooling solutions will help the HPC world by reducing the cooling costs while significantly increasing power densities (and computing capacity).

Integrated into each server, Calyos cooling solution is composed of an evaporator (“cold plate”) and a heat exchanger (HEX) connected with the data center room water system. This solution is easily implemented as soon as the rack is equipped with a chilled door or with liquid cooled servers. Where liquid is not available, an air HEX can be used with air containment.

Having a very small thermal resistance (Rth Chip‑to‑Water < 0.1 K/W), Calyos solutions allow its clients to improve their balance between higher heat loads, lower chip temperature and higher hot water cooling temperature. Current and future HPC architectures require such level of cooling performances.

insideHPC: What are your target markets?

Maxime Vuckovic: Calyos solutions have a strong potential on any market using highly heat dissipative semiconductors with standardized packaging, either IGBT power modules, or CPUs-like devices.

For CPUs-like applications, the HPC solutions can be applied to sealed electronic boxes, regular data center servers, power supply units (PSU), routers, workstations or even gaming PCs.

For IGBT power module applications, the cooling solution is integrated inside the power converter. This system converts properly the electrical power in order to inject it into the grid (wind turbines, photovoltaic systems) or to supply an electrical load (traction trains, or electrical motors and pumps).

insideHPC: Your company resides in Belgium. Do you have any plans for expansion to the US market?

Maxime Vuckovic: Calyos currently does not ship its solutions to the US. However, the company is willing to expand its operations overseas in the coming year.

Regarding its HPC platform product, Calyos is looking for potential users especially focusing on HPC system builders. Calyos will also participate in the SC14 in New Orleans.

Regarding its power conversion platform product, the company is looking for new customers and commercial agents.

insideHPCHow do these products give your customers an advantage over the competition?

Maxime Vuckovic: Thanks to its very low Rth (< 0.1 K/W) and its passiveness, Calyos products advantages over competition can be summarized in three points:

  • Very High Power Density. Calyos platform product can handle 100+ kW/rack while suppressing hot spots thanks to its isothermal cooling. It is already suitable for next generations of high power chips (150+ W) and a mature solution for the coming exascale architectures.
  • Very Low PUE Technology. Thanks to its passiveness, fans and pumps inside the rack are suppressed. Furthermore, data centers can be operated with hot cooling water (40 – 50°C).
  • Standard Rack Architecture. Calyos products are plug-&-play solutions to standard data center racks. There is no need to create dedicated rack architectures as it is the case with innovative monophasic or two-phase immersed solutions. Furthermore, the platform can be standardized towards a full range of electronics components (CPU, GPU, MIC, ASIC). The cooling technology does not constraint the electronics design.

insideHPCYou will be attending ISC’14 in Leipzig in June. Will you have any exciting news?

Maxime Vuckovic: Calyos will present at booth space 822 its latest 2-phase cooling prototypes for HPC servers with liquid HEX and some platform demonstrators for other configurations.

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