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Author Topic: Mineral Oil cooled rigs....  (Read 5178 times)
K.A.T
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November 25, 2011, 08:11:39 PM
 #1

 It would be interesting to see this doing some mining for Botcoin  Cheesy


http://www.pugetsystems.com/aquarium-computer.php

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November 25, 2011, 08:19:41 PM
 #2

I don't think the first link is the link you want.

Cooling w/ mineral oil is possible however there are a couple of issues.
1) Heat conductivity of mineral oil is relatively low compared to water.  This means a larger flow rate is required.
2) Resale of equipment is essentially zero
3) Mineral oil is viscous (thick) so to it requires more powerful pump than distilled water.  
4) Mineral oil is relatively expensive as a working fluid.

It would be an interesting project but I doubt it would be any cheaper than water cooling.  Any money you would save by not needing a waterblock would be offset by much more expensive pump, large amounts of expensive mineral oil, and container to submerge components.

For example that kit there is about $600 and requires 12 gallons of mineral oil = $120.  So $720.  That is more than my watercooling kit for 3x5970s.
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November 25, 2011, 08:40:01 PM
 #3

I don't think the first link is the link you want.

Cooling w/ mineral oil is possible however there are a couple of issues.
1) Heat conductivity of mineral oil is relatively low compared to water.  This means a larger flow rate is required.
2) Resale of equipment is essentially zero
3) Mineral oil is viscous (thick) so to it requires more powerful pump than distilled water.  
4) Mineral oil is relatively expensive as a working fluid.

It would be an interesting project but I doubt it would be any cheaper than water cooling.  Any money you would save by not needing a waterblock would be offset by much more expensive pump, large amounts of expensive mineral oil, and container to submerge components.

For example that kit there is about $600 and requires 12 gallons of mineral oil = $120.  So $720.  That is more than my watercooling kit for 3x5970s.

1) Not necessarily.  Since the oil is in direct contact with computing surfaces, whereas water must run through a waterblock, Not much of a flow rate is necessary.  Sure, if you ran mineral oil through a waterblock, you'd need a much higher flow rate.  But comparing the two as-is is apples and oranges.
2) No - components can be cleaned with rubbing alcohol or distilled water easily enough.
3) Again, apples to oranges.  A more powerful pump won't necessarily be needed, as the flow rate requirement might actually be lower than with a watercooled rig.
4) This is true.  Extremely expensive.

And agree with your last statement about it being an interesting experiment, but not for saving money.
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November 25, 2011, 08:48:10 PM
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Agree guys. It all goes down to cost. Air basically is free. You just need a bunch of fans (and an AC if your in a hot country Sad ) to cool your stuff down......

But its worth a try if one does something homemade or custom built without these expensive kits.......
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November 25, 2011, 08:55:15 PM
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Agree guys. It all goes down to cost. Air basically is free. You just need a bunch of fans (and an AC if your in a hot country Sad ) to cool your stuff down......

But its worth a try if one does something homemade or custom built without these expensive kits.......

I wonder how much wattage could be dissipated just by putting a rig in an unmoving aquarium full of mineral oil...
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Gerald Davis


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November 25, 2011, 09:10:32 PM
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Agree guys. It all goes down to cost. Air basically is free. You just need a bunch of fans (and an AC if your in a hot country Sad ) to cool your stuff down......

But its worth a try if one does something homemade or custom built without these expensive kits.......

I wonder how much wattage could be dissipated just by putting a rig in an unmoving aquarium full of mineral oil...

Depends on how big the aquarium is.  The surface area of the aquarium would determine your c/w however it is going to be low unless we are talking about a bathtub sized surface area.  A radiator works because the fins massively increase the surface area and thus rate thermal energy is transferred.  Fans assist that by moving cool(er) air over the radiator increasing the delta between radiator's temp and the ambient air temp.

Remember nothing is "water cooled" or "oil cooled".  Ultimately you are dumping the heat into the air (extreme exceptions aside).  "liquid cooling" is simply increasing the surface area.  You are cooling a giant radiator with air instead of a relatively small GPU heatsink.
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November 26, 2011, 01:11:11 AM
 #7

What about coreocion!?
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November 27, 2011, 07:26:38 AM
 #8

My though was always surround the parts with mineral oil (in a relatively thin tank, about the size of a normal tower) and then run pipes with chilled water through the oil...You're not pumping oil, and the parts should be protected from condensation by the oil.

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Atheros
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November 27, 2011, 08:18:03 AM
 #9

If I lived near a lake or had a pond in my back yard, I would totally pump water through a heat exchanger connected to a conventional water cooling system. One could build walls of systems that are silent and leave very little heat in the room.

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November 27, 2011, 09:39:08 AM
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Unless you seal the box hermetically, you have to pump the oil, because you have to filter it.  And even if you seal it, you still want movement in the oil to help dissipate the heat.

There have been plenty of experiments with mineral oil, and the consensus is that its doesnt cool better than air (let alone water), it just has the advantage of being completely silent and perhaps looking cool.

As for price, if you can achieve sufficient density and scale it may not be that bad. Mineral oil isnt that expensive in volume, most of the other parts you need like pumps, filters, radiators can be used from a car wreck or something.  GPU waterblocks and other watercooling components arent cheap either.

For a single rig, an oil bath is probably not worth it, but if you have a small farm that you can space efficiently submerge, it might actually be doable. Have a look here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=U5zoIEjo1Zk

Not fun for maintenance though.

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Gerald Davis


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November 27, 2011, 03:08:36 PM
 #11

If I lived near a lake or had a pond in my back yard, I would totally pump water through a heat exchanger connected to a conventional water cooling system. One could build walls of systems that are silent and leave very little heat in the room.

The suburban equivelent would be to use a heat exchanger and dump the thermal energy into backyard swimming pool.  "Free" heat for your pool and a giant thermal sink.  Still waterblocks are the most expensive component for cooling and you would still need those.
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November 27, 2011, 03:12:59 PM
 #12

  Still waterblocks are the most expensive component for cooling and you would still need those.

Why would you need waterblocks if you submerge everything in oil? I think the previous poster was talking about cooling the oil with a heatexchanger to a pond .

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November 27, 2011, 09:06:59 PM
 #13

DeathAndTaxes interpreted me correctly but I suppose mineral oil could still be used for the rig. Would all of that mineral-oil equipment really be cheaper than a couple water blocks?

By the way, the pool is an excellent idea! Actually, why don't people's home AC units dump heat to the pool? We could easily manufacture a window AC unit with two tubes and one cable coming out of the back which you run to your pool. On the end of one of the tubes is a tiny pump which pumps water through the AC unit and back to the pool. It would be much cheaper AC and a pool at a comfortable temperature! Why doesn't this exist?

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Gerald Davis


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November 27, 2011, 09:39:18 PM
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DeathAndTaxes interpreted me correctly but I suppose mineral oil could still be used for the rig. Would all of that mineral-oil equipment really be cheaper than a couple water blocks?

By the way, the pool is an excellent idea! Actually, why don't people's home AC units dump heat to the pool? We could easily manufacture a window AC unit with two tubes and one cable coming out of the back which you run to your pool. On the end of one of the tubes is a tiny pump which pumps water through the AC unit and back to the pool. It would be much cheaper AC and a pool at a comfortable temperature! Why doesn't this exist?

Honest answer ... because people don't really care about energy efficiency because energy is extremely cheap. 

If energy costs 10x the current price you would see a lot more dual use technologies, higher efficiency appliances, more money spent on insulation, passively cool/warm home designs, skylighting, solar panels, etc.
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November 29, 2011, 05:00:26 AM
 #15

It is truly wasteful what we do with our free energy sources. Future generations will truly look back at ours and all will wonder, "How could they have been so stupid?"

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November 29, 2011, 06:36:07 AM
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DeathAndTaxes interpreted me correctly but I suppose mineral oil could still be used for the rig. Would all of that mineral-oil equipment really be cheaper than a couple water blocks?

By the way, the pool is an excellent idea! Actually, why don't people's home AC units dump heat to the pool? We could easily manufacture a window AC unit with two tubes and one cable coming out of the back which you run to your pool. On the end of one of the tubes is a tiny pump which pumps water through the AC unit and back to the pool. It would be much cheaper AC and a pool at a comfortable temperature! Why doesn't this exist?

What the heck are you talking about?

Do you know how AC works?


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Gerald Davis


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November 29, 2011, 06:39:01 AM
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DeathAndTaxes interpreted me correctly but I suppose mineral oil could still be used for the rig. Would all of that mineral-oil equipment really be cheaper than a couple water blocks?

By the way, the pool is an excellent idea! Actually, why don't people's home AC units dump heat to the pool? We could easily manufacture a window AC unit with two tubes and one cable coming out of the back which you run to your pool. On the end of one of the tubes is a tiny pump which pumps water through the AC unit and back to the pool. It would be much cheaper AC and a pool at a comfortable temperature! Why doesn't this exist?

What the heck are you talking about?

Do you know how AC works?



Do you?

Convention AC unit transfer thermal energy to outside air.  A geothermal heat pump transfers thermal energy to outside ground water.  Wouldn't take a rocket scientist to adapt the same technology to transfer thermal energy into a backyard pool.

An AC unit is simply a heat pump.  It pumps thermal energy from inside the house to outside.
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November 29, 2011, 06:53:58 AM
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DeathAndTaxes interpreted me correctly but I suppose mineral oil could still be used for the rig. Would all of that mineral-oil equipment really be cheaper than a couple water blocks?

By the way, the pool is an excellent idea! Actually, why don't people's home AC units dump heat to the pool? We could easily manufacture a window AC unit with two tubes and one cable coming out of the back which you run to your pool. On the end of one of the tubes is a tiny pump which pumps water through the AC unit and back to the pool. It would be much cheaper AC and a pool at a comfortable temperature! Why doesn't this exist?

What the heck are you talking about?

Do you know how AC works?



Do you?

Convention AC unit transfer thermal energy to outside air.  A geothermal heat pump transfers thermal energy to outside ground water.  Wouldn't take a rocket scientist to adapt the same technology to transfer thermal energy into a backyard pool.

An AC unit is simply a heat pump.  It pumps thermal energy from inside the house to outside.

To outside ground water? Are we living in the same planet ?
 
Last time i checked the heat was pumped out by air.

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Gerald Davis


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November 29, 2011, 07:02:51 AM
 #19

To outside ground water? Are we living in the same planet ?
Last time i checked the heat was pumped out by air.

Google geothermal heat pump and educate yourself.

Second even in a air source heat pump (AC unit is simply a uni-directional heat pump) the heat isn't pumped out BY AIR.  The heat is transfered via a working fluid.  It use to be freon and now is the enviro friendly stuff.

so heat inside ------> working fluid -----> coils outside.  

In ground source heat pump the heat is pumped INTO ground (either ground water or closed water loop underground)
In air source heat pump the heat is pumped INTO the air.

There is little difference between a ground source heat pump (aka geothermal heat pump) or an air sourced heat pump.  The only thing that changes is where you "dump" the heat.  Given the ground stays cool all year round it is more efficient to dump heat there in the summer and pull heat from there in the winter.

Maybe you didn't know but in an AC unit the air inside the house stays inside and the air outside the house stays outside.  There is no movement of air.
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November 29, 2011, 07:43:50 AM
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To outside ground water? Are we living in the same planet ?
Last time i checked the heat was pumped out by air.

Google geothermal heat pump and educate yourself.

Second even in a air source heat pump (AC unit is simply a uni-directional heat pump) the heat isn't pumped out BY AIR.  The heat is transfered via a working fluid.  It use to be freon and now is the enviro friendly stuff.

so heat inside ------> working fluid -----> coils outside.  

In ground source heat pump the heat is pumped INTO ground (either ground water or closed water loop underground)
In air source heat pump the heat is pumped INTO the air.

There is little difference between a ground source heat pump (aka geothermal heat pump) or an air sourced heat pump.  The only thing that changes is where you "dump" the heat.  Given the ground stays cool all year round it is more efficient to dump heat there in the summer and pull heat from there in the winter.

Maybe you didn't know but in an AC unit the air inside the house stays inside and the air outside the house stays outside.  There is no movement of air.

D&T get off your high horse cause you dont know what i know.

At first the other poster talks about AC and you brought up geothermal? As if its already available for us to buy. Hence i asked if you lived on the same planet. You didnt get the hint and still thought you're educating me ?

Re-read what he said again, he wanted to run water to the pool as a reservoir and back to the AC. The AC use liquid gas not water. Why would he want an AC if what he said is a liquid cooling setup? hence does he know how AC works?

I built a rack (server rack) using chilled liquid cooling. My controller is a simple Arduino board that connects to sensors to read dewpoint and auto adjust the compressor to have no condensation at the heat block. I guess i dont know how AC works at all eh?

PS. btw as the matter of fact, I did use geothermal heat pump. In 2002, after couple years of building liquid cooling system, i got sick of using heatercore (rads werent available for PC yet here), i dug up my ground and buried 100 ft of copper tubing. I used Iwaki pump to push all the liquid thro it. It was more of an experiment. My PC desk has to be by the entrance cause i couldnt route the tubing indoors.

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