Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions has extensive experience; both analytically and empirically, in thermal solutions for a wide range of modules and subsystems. We have developed card level products for cooling via forced air, conduction, spray cooling and also with liquid cooled heat frames. At the system level we have developed solutions that utilize forced air internal, forced air external, forced air via a rugged and compact air conditioning unit, conduction / baseplate cooled, natural convection, liquid cooled chassis and Air-Flow-Through (AFT) systems. This extensive experience gives us the ability to understand and perform trade studies of a wide range of solutions to handle the thermal load presented in program requirements.

  • Cooling capacity of up to 200W per slot
  • Environmentally sealed to accommodate the harshest environments
  • Ideal for high power, high performance applications such as sensor processing
  • Does not require exotic materials or fluids associated with liquid or evaporative cooling
  • Highest reliability among active cooling solutions<

For systems requiring high power densities, AFT cooling is one of the most reliable active cooling solutions. By providing a thermal path of the least possible resistance, AFT cooled chassis from Curtiss-Wright can handle thermal densities up to 200W per system slot.

AFT technology passes air through the heat frame, preventing the ambient air from contacting the electronics, but decreasing the thermal path to the cooling air dramatically.

On both the inlet and the exhaust sides of the card, a gasket mounted inside the chassis seals the card’s internal air passage to the chassis side walls. These seals prevent air from being blown into the chassis and protect the internal electronics from the harsh external environment.

As stated above, a great benefit of the AFT approach is that the cooling air is brought in very close proximity to the high power components. This applies to both the components on the base card and to the components on the XMC cards. Providing a short circuit path to the cooling ambient air from the high power components on the XMC will allow the highest performance possible for even the XMC cards. Each high power component interfaces to the AFT heat frame through a conductive, flexible gap pad.

Another extremely valuable benefit of AFT is that every card has an isolated thermal path. Instead of cards having to share cooling air or share the thermal interface into which they conduct heat, each AFT card has its own inlet and its own exhaust. There is no other cooling path other than the cooling air, which allows every card to be viewed in isolation from a thermal standpoint. The critical aspect at the system level is to ensure balanced airflow through all of the cards, so that each card has the required amount of cooling air to keep components at their appropriate temperature.

Given the benefits of AFT in simplicity of design, weight efficiency and low thermal resistance, AFT cooling technology is ideal for high power applications such as sensor processing.


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