Cold Plates

Cold Plates

Cold Plates, Liquid Cooling is a natural evolution beyond air cooling. The need for improved thermal performance and environmental requirements is essential driving factors.
CSI’s cold plates offer a high transfer coefficient, although this depends on the specific coolant used and the mode of convective heat transfer. There are many ways to accomplish liquid cooling.

Cooling Source manufactures several types of cold plates. We use various manufacturing processes such as high-precision CNC machining, extrusion, tube bending, and friction stir welding (FSW).

The FSW technology provides solid-state joints with mechanical properties like the parent materials, resulting in a monolithic structure to achieve a solid airtight seal. Consequently, it eliminates the need to use a tube. Also, it provides greater design flexibility.

One of the most popular manufacturing methods is to machine a groove in the base and embed a tube in the flow path. Design engineers often place the line toward the top surface. Therefore, it provides better cooling to the devices. In addition, this construction method can be cost-effective.

Cold plates can be manufactured with copper or aluminum alloy.

 We bend copper, aluminum, and stainless-steel tubes.

Some of the main benefits achieved are:

The reduction of noise is also more efficient. Some drawbacks include the risk entailed with the proximity of liquid to electronics and its cost. Cold plates are more expensive than fan sinks, which require fewer components such as reservoirs, pumps, water blocks, hoses, and heatsinks.

Engineering Support.

As part of the cold plate heatsinks design work, our engineers apply advanced 3D modeling. Also, we are using cutting-edge CFD tools to optimize your cold plate heat transfer project. In addition, we provide our customers with a complete cooling solution to meet specific requirements in a timely and cost-effective manner.

Also, you can count on our Mechanical Engineers to assist with design change and reduce manufacturing costs.

Our fully equipped lab can validate your cold plate design, pressure leak test, and inspect. Flow resistance test, thermal resistance test, temperature-rise test under different power, and heat sink efficiency tests.

The CSI team can help you meet tight schedule requirements while allowing you to focus on your business’s core competencies.

Also, we stand by, ready to support you from concept to production globally.

We ensure secure facilities, traceability, and document control.


Call or e-mail us today to see your best cold plate option. We feel confident that you will love our competitiveness, engineering support, and customer service during the sale and afterward.

Cooling Source, Inc. utilizes various technologies and round or flat tubing to produce performance-fin cold plates with a liquid-cooled chassis. Designed with the increasing demand for compact designs in mind and an accompanying requirement for power densities, this type of manufacturing satisfies the growing need for close cooling requirements.

Cold plate technology is the perfect choice for your high-power requirements, utilized by fields as diverse as high-powered electronics, lasers, power drives, and medical equipment and often supplied to the military and aerospace industries. If you are faced with high watt densities and air-cooled heat sinks are inadequate, liquid-cooled cold plates offer an ideal high-performance heat transfer solution alternative.

Copper Cold Plate Heatsinks

Copper cold plate heatsinks are a type of cooling solution commonly used in electronic devices, such as computer CPUs and power electronics, to dissipate heat generated by the components. The cold plate heatsink is typically made of copper due to its excellent thermal conductivity properties.

Here are the key differences, benefits, and reliability aspects of copper cold plate heatsinks:

Thermal Conductivity: Copper is one of the best thermal conductors among commonly used materials. It efficiently transfers heat from the heat source (e.g., CPU) to the cold plate, enabling effective heat dissipation. Copper’s high thermal conductivity helps in reducing the temperature of the component being cooled.

Design Flexibility: Copper cold plates can be designed in various shapes and sizes to fit different applications and form factors. They can be customized to conform to the specific dimensions and requirements of the electronic device, allowing for efficient heat transfer and maximum surface area contact.

Efficiency: Copper’s high thermal conductivity, coupled with its ability to form good contact with the heat source, allows for efficient heat transfer and dissipation. This helps in maintaining lower temperatures and preventing overheating, which can degrade the performance and lifespan of electronic components.

Reliability: Copper is a durable and reliable material for cold plate heatsinks. It has excellent corrosion resistance properties, which ensures long-term performance and minimizes the risk of degradation over time. Copper cold plates are also less prone to mechanical failures compared to other materials, providing a robust cooling solution.

Compatibility: Copper cold plates are compatible with various cooling methods, such as liquid cooling or forced-air cooling. They can be integrated into different cooling systems to cater to specific cooling requirements and achieve optimal thermal management.

Cost: Copper is generally more expensive than some alternative materials used in heatsinks, such as aluminum. The higher cost is mainly due to the higher price of copper itself and the additional manufacturing processes involved. However, the superior thermal conductivity and performance of copper can justify the cost in applications where efficient cooling is crucial.

Overall, copper cold plate heatsinks offer superior thermal conductivity, efficient heat dissipation, design flexibility, and long-term reliability. They are particularly beneficial for high-performance electronic devices that generate substantial heat, ensuring optimal temperature management and preventing thermal issues that can affect performance and longevity.

Water Cold Plate Heatsinks

Water cold plate heatsinks, also known as liquid cold plate heatsinks, are a type of cooling solution that utilizes water or another liquid to dissipate heat from electronic components. On the other hand, traditional heatsinks are typically made of metal, such as aluminum or copper, and rely on passive air cooling.

Here are the key differences, benefits, and considerations for water cold plate heatsinks:

Cooling Efficiency: Water cold plate heatsinks offer significantly higher cooling efficiency compared to traditional heatsinks. Water has a higher thermal conductivity than air, allowing it to absorb and dissipate heat more effectively. This makes water cold plate heatsinks particularly suitable for high-power applications or situations where efficient heat removal is crucial.

Thermal Management: Water cold plate heatsinks provide better thermal management by evenly distributing the cooling liquid across the entire surface of the cold plate. This allows for more uniform heat dissipation, reducing hotspots and improving the overall temperature regulation of the components.

Compact Design: Water cold plate heatsinks can have a more compact design compared to traditional heatsinks. The direct contact of the liquid with the heat source enables efficient heat transfer, reducing the need for bulky cooling solutions.

Flexibility: Water cold plate heatsinks offer flexibility in terms of design and customization. They can be manufactured in various shapes and sizes to fit specific components or devices. This adaptability makes them suitable for a wide range of applications.

Reliability: Water cold plate heatsinks are generally considered reliable, but they require proper maintenance to prevent issues such as leaks or corrosion. The seals and connections must be carefully designed and maintained to ensure long-term reliability and avoid any damage to the electronic components.

Cost: Water cold plate heatsinks tend to be more expensive compared to traditional heatsinks due to their complexity and additional components such as pumps and tubing required for liquid circulation. However, the cost can be justified in applications that demand efficient cooling and thermal management.

It’s important to note that water cold plate heatsinks are typically used in more specialized applications where higher cooling performance is required, such as in high-power electronic devices, data centers, or industrial equipment. Traditional heatsinks, on the other hand, remain suitable and cost-effective for many general-purpose applications.

Deionized Water Cold Plate Heatsinks

Deionized water cold plate heatsinks are a type of cooling solution commonly used in various electronic devices to dissipate heat generated by components such as CPUs, GPUs, or power modules. They utilize a cold plate, which is a metal plate in direct contact with the heat-generating component, and deionized water as the cooling medium.

Here are the key differences, benefits, and considerations for deionized water cold plate heatsinks:

Cooling Efficiency: Deionized water has excellent thermal conductivity, which allows it to efficiently transfer heat from the hot component to the cold plate. This helps in effectively dissipating heat and keeping the temperature of the component within safe limits.

Non-Conductive: One of the main advantages of using deionized water is that it is non-conductive. This means it does not conduct electricity, reducing the risk of electrical shorts or damage to the electronic components in case of a leak or accidental spillage.

Corrosion Prevention: Deionized water has low levels of dissolved ions, which minimizes the risk of corrosion within the cooling system. This is important because corrosion can lead to the formation of deposits or blockages that reduce cooling efficiency and reliability.

Versatility: Deionized water cold plate heatsinks can be used in various applications, ranging from high-performance computing systems to industrial equipment. They are adaptable and can be customized to fit specific cooling requirements and form factors.

Reliability: The reliability of deionized water cold plate heatsinks depends on the design and quality of the system. Proper construction, sealing, and maintenance are essential to prevent leaks and ensure long-term reliability. Additionally, regular monitoring and periodic replacement of the deionized water are necessary to maintain optimal cooling performance.

It’s important to note that while deionized water is non-conductive, it does not mean it is entirely safe or risk-free. If the system is not properly designed, installed, or maintained, there is still a possibility of leaks or other issues that could lead to damage. Therefore, it’s crucial to follow manufacturer guidelines and ensure proper precautions are taken when using deionized water cooling systems.

Overall, deionized water cold plate heatsinks offer efficient cooling, non-conductivity, corrosion prevention, and versatility. However, their reliability is contingent on proper design, construction, maintenance, and monitoring. It’s always advisable to consult with experts or manufacturers for specific recommendations and guidelines for your particular application.

cold plate

Dielectric fluids Cold Plate Heatsinks

Dielectric fluid-based cold plate heatsinks, also known as liquid cooling systems or immersion cooling, have gained popularity in recent years for their ability to efficiently dissipate heat from electronic components. Let’s explore the difference between dielectric fluids and traditional air-based heatsinks, as well as their benefits and reliability.


Air-based heatsinks: These are the most common type of heatsinks used in electronics. They consist of metal fins that increase the surface area for heat dissipation. Air is used as the cooling medium, and fans or natural convection circulate the air to carry away heat.

Dielectric fluid-based cold plate heatsinks: In these systems, dielectric fluids, such as oils or synthetic fluids, are used instead of air. The electronic components are either immersed in the fluid or have the fluid flowing through channels in a cold plate attached to the components. The fluid absorbs heat and carries it away, providing effective cooling.


Enhanced heat dissipation: Dielectric fluids have higher heat transfer capabilities compared to air, allowing for more efficient cooling. They can rapidly absorb and carry away heat from hot components, resulting in lower operating temperatures.

Increased thermal conductivity: Compared to air, dielectric fluids have higher thermal conductivity, meaning they can transport heat more effectively. This enables better distribution of heat across the cooling system.

Reduced noise: Liquid cooling systems typically generate less noise compared to air-based cooling systems. The absence of fans or the use of quieter pumps contributes to a quieter overall operation.

Higher cooling capacity: Dielectric fluid-based systems can handle higher heat loads, making them suitable for high-performance applications or overclocked components that generate substantial heat.

Better temperature regulation: Liquid cooling systems offer precise temperature control, as the fluid can be circulated and cooled externally. This feature is particularly beneficial for sensitive electronic components that require strict temperature management.


Leak risk: One potential concern with dielectric fluid-based systems is the risk of fluid leaks. If the fluid comes into contact with electrical components, it can cause damage. However, modern designs have made significant advancements in leak prevention, utilizing sealed systems and improved fluid containment mechanisms.

Maintenance requirements: Liquid cooling systems may require periodic maintenance, such as fluid checks, replacements, or system flushes. However, these maintenance tasks are generally manageable and should not significantly impact system reliability.

Component compatibility: It’s essential to ensure that the electronic components used are compatible with dielectric fluids. Certain materials, such as rubber or plastics, can degrade or be affected by prolonged exposure to specific fluids. Proper selection of materials and fluid compatibility testing are crucial to ensuring long-term reliability.

Overall, dielectric fluid-based cold plate heatsinks offer superior heat dissipation capabilities, increased thermal conductivity, reduced noise, and precise temperature control compared to traditional air-based heatsinks. While there are some considerations regarding leak risk and maintenance, modern designs have addressed many of these concerns, making these systems reliable options for efficient and effective cooling of electronic components.



Liquid cold plates are heat sink that uses liquid as a cooling medium to dissipate heat from electronic components. Cooling Source manufactures cold plates made of copper or aluminum. In addition, have channels or tubes that allow the liquid to flow through them.

The liquid is usually water or a water-based coolant circulated through the cold plate using a pump. As the fluid flows through the channels, it absorbs heat from the electronic components. Then it carries it away from the cold plate.

Liquid cold plates are heat sink that uses liquid as a cooling medium to dissipate heat from electronic components. They are typically made of copper or aluminum and have channels or tubes that allow the liquid to flow through them.

The liquid is usually water or a water-based coolant circulated through the cold plate using a pump. As the fluid flows through the channels, it absorbs heat from the electronic components and carries it away from the cold plate.

liquid cold plate

Aluminum Cold Plate Heatsinks

Aluminum cold plate heatsinks are a type of cooling solution commonly used in electronic devices to dissipate heat generated by components such as CPUs, GPUs, or power electronics. The primary purpose of a cold plate heatsink is to transfer heat away from the source and dissipate it into the surrounding environment.

The key difference between a traditional heatsink and a cold plate heatsink lies in their design and functionality. Traditional heatsinks typically consist of an array of metal fins attached to a base, which increases the surface area available for heat dissipation. They rely on natural convection or forced airflow to carry away the heat. In contrast, cold plate heatsinks incorporate a base plate in direct contact with the heat-generating component. This base plate, usually made of aluminum, serves as a pathway for heat transfer.

Benefits of Aluminum Cold Plate Heatsinks:

Enhanced Heat Transfer: The direct contact between the cold plate and the heat source allows for efficient heat transfer. This direct conduction path enables better cooling performance compared to traditional heatsinks.

Reduced Thermal Resistance: The use of a cold plate minimizes the thermal resistance between the heat source and the heatsink, facilitating more effective heat dissipation.

Improved Cooling Capacity: Cold plate heatsinks can handle higher heat loads and are suitable for applications with higher thermal requirements. They are commonly used in high-power electronics and devices that require efficient cooling.

Customizable Design: Cold plate heatsinks can be designed with various configurations to meet specific thermal management needs. They can incorporate channels, grooves, or other features to optimize coolant flow in liquid cooling systems.

Reliability of Aluminum Cold Plate Heatsinks:

Aluminum cold plate heatsinks are generally considered reliable cooling solutions. Aluminum is a lightweight and thermally conductive material that efficiently transfers heat. However, the reliability of a cold plate heatsink depends on several factors, including proper design, adequate mounting pressure, thermal interface materials (TIMs), and system-level considerations.

To ensure optimal reliability, it is important to consider factors such as thermal interface materials, proper installation techniques, and overall system design. Using high-quality TIMs and ensuring adequate mounting pressure can help maximize heat transfer efficiency and long-term reliability.

Overall, aluminum cold plate heatsinks offer improved cooling performance compared to traditional heatsinks, making them suitable for applications that require efficient heat dissipation. However, it is crucial to consider the specific thermal requirements, system design, and proper installation to ensure reliable and effective cooling.

liquid cold plate

Polymer Cold Plate Heatsinks

Polymer-based cold plate heatsinks are a type of heatsink that utilize polymer materials, such as thermoplastics or thermosetting resins, for their construction. They are an alternative to traditional metal-based heatsinks, which are typically made from materials like aluminum or copper.

Here are the differences, benefits, and reliability considerations associated with polymer-based cold plate heatsinks:

Differences: Material: Polymer-based cold plate heatsinks are made from polymers, while traditional heatsinks are made from metals like aluminum or copper.

Thermal conductivity: Polymers have lower thermal conductivity compared to metals. This means that polymer-based heatsinks may not dissipate heat as efficiently as metal-based heatsinks.

Benefits: Weight: Polymer-based heatsinks are generally lighter than metal-based heatsinks. This can be advantageous in weight-sensitive applications or when there are limitations on the weight that can be added to a system.

Cost: Polymers are often less expensive than metals, so polymer-based heatsinks may be more cost-effective, especially for mass production.

Corrosion resistance: Unlike metals, polymers are generally corrosion-resistant. This can be beneficial in environments where moisture or corrosive substances are present.

Electrical insulation: Polymers are electrically insulating materials, which means they can provide electrical isolation between the heatsink and other components. This can be important in electronic systems to prevent electrical shorts.

Reliability considerations: Thermal conductivity: As mentioned earlier, polymers have lower thermal conductivity compared to metals. This can result in slightly higher thermal resistance and lower overall heat dissipation capability.

Temperature limitations: Polymers have lower thermal stability compared to metals. They may have lower maximum operating temperatures, and prolonged exposure to high temperatures can lead to degradation or deformation of the polymer material.

Mechanical strength: Metals are generally stronger than polymers, so polymer-based heatsinks may have lower mechanical strength and could be more susceptible to physical damage or warping under high-pressure or high-stress conditions.

Long-term reliability: The long-term reliability of polymer-based heatsinks may depend on the specific polymer material used, as well as the operating conditions and thermal cycling. It’s important to choose a high-quality polymer with suitable properties for the intended application to ensure long-term reliability.

Overall, polymer-based cold plate heatsinks offer advantages such as weight reduction, cost-effectiveness, corrosion resistance, and electrical insulation. However, their lower thermal conductivity and potentially lower mechanical strength compared to metal-based heatsinks should be considered when selecting the appropriate heatsink for a specific application.


Water and ethylene glycol (EG) Cold Plate Heatsinks

Water and ethylene glycol (also known as antifreeze) are both commonly used as coolants in cold plate heatsinks.

Here are the differences, benefits, and reliability considerations for each:

Water Cold Plate Heatsink:

Water is an excellent coolant due to its high thermal conductivity and heat capacity.

Benefits: High cooling efficiency: Water can effectively absorb and dissipate heat, making it an efficient coolant.

Cost-effective: Water is relatively inexpensive and easily accessible.

Environmentally friendly: Water is non-toxic and does not pose a significant environmental hazard.

Reliability considerations: Corrosion: Water can cause corrosion in certain metals if not properly treated or if impurities are present.

Freezing: Water can freeze at low temperatures, leading to potential damage to the cold plate if not appropriately managed in cold environments.

Ethylene Glycol Cold Plate Heatsink:

Ethylene glycol is a type of antifreeze commonly used in automotive applications.

Benefits: Lower freezing point: Ethylene glycol has a lower freezing point than water, making it suitable for cold environments.

Increased corrosion resistance: Ethylene glycol can offer better corrosion protection for the cold plate and associated components.

Reliability considerations: Reduced thermal conductivity: Compared to water, ethylene glycol has lower thermal conductivity, which may result in slightly lower cooling efficiency.

Toxicity: Ethylene glycol is toxic, so precautions must be taken to prevent exposure and ensure proper handling and disposal.

Overall, the choice between water and ethylene glycol as a coolant for cold plate heatsinks depends on the specific application and requirements. Water is generally preferred when high cooling efficiency and environmental friendliness are prioritized. Ethylene glycol is more suitable for cold environments and when enhanced corrosion resistance is required, although it carries the risk of toxicity. It’s crucial to consider factors like freezing temperatures, corrosion potential, thermal conductivity requirements, and safety regulations while selecting the appropriate coolant for a given application.


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