A comprehensive model of a miniature-scale linear compressor for electronics cooling is presented. Linear compressors are appealing for refrigeration applications in electronics cooling. A small number of moving components translate to less theoretical frictional losses and the possibility that this technology could scale to smaller physical sizes better than conventional compressors. The model developed here incorporates all of the major components of the linear compressor including dynamics associated with the piston motion. The results of the compressor model were validated using experimental data from a prototype linear compressor. The prototype compressor has an overall displacement of approximately 3 cm3, an average stroke of 0.6 cm. The prototype compressor was custom built for this work and utilizes custom parts with the exception of the mechanical springs and the linear motor. The model results showed good agreement when validated against the experimental results. The piston stroke is predicted within 1.3% MAE. The volumetric and overall isentropic efficiencies are predicted within 24% and 31%, MAE respectively.


linear compressor, compressor model, electronics cooling, miniature compressor

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C. Bradshaw, E. A. Groll, and S. V. Garimella, “A Comprehensive Model of a Miniature-Scale Linear Compressor for Electronics Cooling,” International Journal of Refrigeration, Vol. 34, pp. 63-73, 2010.