Energy Department Efficiency Project Earns R&D Magazine Editor's Choice Award

December 5, 2012

The Sandia Cooler—an innovative energy efficiency technology developed at the Sandia National Laboratories—is one of three emerging technologies to receive R&D Magazine's 2012 Editor's Choice Award. The Sandia Cooler, which efficiently cools processor chips in computer systems, was recognized earlier this year with one of the magazine's annual R&D 100 awards. Sandia National Laboratories developed this technology with support from the Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.

The Sandia Cooler technology significantly improves the way heat is transferred and cooled in computers and microelectronics by addressing the heat sink boundary layer—a longstanding bottleneck to heat transfer in conventional coolers. Data centers and other large-scale computing environments could benefit from this technology, as it significantly reduces the energy needed to cool the processor chips used in these facilities.

Additionally, the Sandia Cooler can benefit other applications where thermal management and energy efficiency are important, particularly with heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC). The Sandia Cooler also functions in a smaller, quieter package compared to a standard central processing unit (CPU) cooler, and greatly improves resistance to dust in the heat exchanger fins.

Since 1962, R&D Magazine has presented awards for innovative technology developments that offer promising commercial potential. Researchers funded by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy received 12 of the R&D 100 awards in 2012, and the Department of Energy as a whole won a total of 36 R&D 100 awards across all of its research and development programs.

The Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) accelerates development and facilitates deployment of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies and market-based solutions that strengthen U.S. energy security, environmental quality, and economic vitality. Learn more about EERE's emerging building technologies and Sandia National Laboratories' energy programs.