A Heat-Resistant Computer That Works Alike In The Core Of Earth, On Mars And Venus To Be Developed Soon

First Posted: Apr 20, 2017 05:00 AM EDT

Researchers from the College of Engineering, University of Nebraska-Lincoln have successfully developed a thermal diode that works on heat instead of electricity. It can utilize the heat produced while functioning of computers, thus can be used to produce heat-resistant computers. It is speculated that these computers can work in extremely hot conditions and in space including alien planets like Mars and Venus.

Ever since mankind developed computer systems, it has been struggling to minimize the heat produced by it. The success achieved in this regard until today cannot be considered remarkable, especially that most commercial computer systems produced by companies like IBM and Lockheed Martin are adapted only to cool down the system rather than minimizing heat production. To achieve this, they started integrating blower fans or microscopic water droplets in computer chips, New Atlas reported.

Doing so serves to partially compensate for the enormous amounts of heat generated by computers. However, the same tactics hardly seem to work for cooling down large data centers and server houses. Hence, scientists have been searching for alternative methods in dealing with the heat generated in computer systems.

According to ZME Science, since diodes function as the logic components of all conventional computer systems, modifying their properties to withstand and function on heat energy can serve the purpose. According to Sidy Ndao and Mahmoud Elzouka, the researchers behind the innovation of nano-thermal-mechanical devices or in simple terms thermal diodes, these diodes can help computers use their own heat as an alternative source of energy. So instead of succumbing to overheating, these computers will work better at high temperatures.

The thermal diodes are designed with pairs of surfaces. Each pair has a stationary surface and a mobile surface that can be moved toward or farther away depending on the level of heat present. The movement of the surface helps in maintaining a uniform flow of heat energy for the functioning of the computers.

According to Daily News & Analysis, such computers can function efficiently in temperatures as high as 1,300 degrees Fahrenheit. Hence, the computer systems based on these thermal diodes can function in extremely hot places like the core of the Earth in real-time conditions, e.g., while oil drilling.

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