Intro: Autonomous Self Powered Computer Cooler
This is a smart computer cooler that is capable of super cooling your computer by approximately 20-30 degrees Celsius. It is thermostatically controlled and is also able to power itself from the heat given off by your computer. I have been able to reduce my computer temperature from 31.3 degrees to 4.2 degrees Celsius.
This is just a proof of concept prototype. The final product will be much prettier. ;-) The final version will allow for multiple fan speed control, and possibly some fancy lights. I am just awaiting the extra parts to arrive.
What you will need:
- 12v Computer fan (mine was 21Watt)
- (Peltier Plates, Copper plate, Copper heat sink, Thermal Paste, Zip Ties or Mechanics Wire, Electrical Merits, and a Small Computer Fan)
- 12v Thermostat (Available on eBay or from your local electronics store)
- light gauge electrical wires
- Screw Driver
- Piece of closed cell foam (to avoid scratching your desk)
- 12v Transformer (if you need more amperage)
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Step 1: Thermoelectric Generator/Cooler
This is a fairly simple device to build. It is pretty much a giant peltier plate CPU Cooler with a small 12v fan. Mine cost $7.50 to make. You can see all of the building Instructions on this Instuctable (https://www.instructables.com/id/Recycled-Energy-ThermoElectric-Generator/).
The generator uses the heat from your computer to generate electricity. This process directly cools the computer by dissipating the heat, and indirectly by supplying power to the thermostat and larger cooling fan.
Below is a video of the Thermoelectric Generator build.
Step 2: Connect the Thermoelectric Generator
The next step is to connect the generator to the thermostat. Remember to swap the leads (+12, and Ground) because the generator is producing not receiving power.
The neutral lead should go to the +12 contact, and the live lead to the neutral contact.
NOTE: The colors are swapped not the power
Step 3: Connect the Fan
Connect a jumper wire from the +12 contact to the K1 contact. The K1 contact supplies power to the thermostat's 12v switch. Then connect the positive lead from the fan to the K0 contact (output from the
thermostat's 12v switch), and the neutral lead from the fan to the main neutral contact (GND).
The cooling system is now complete.
Note: the two extra wires on the fan are a tachometer and ground. Neither of which need to be connected.
Optionally you can also sever the leads of a 12v transformer and connect the positive to the +12v contact and the neutral to the neutral contact.
Step 4: Install on Computer
Cut and place the foam insulating mat underneath the generator and make sure that the small computer fan is securely aimed into the heat sink. Next place the thermostat probe inside of the computer's main vent, using tape is necessary to make sure tat the probe cannot be sucked into the fan. Finally attach the thermostat control board and turn on your computer.
Step 5: Enjoy
Once your computer warms up the control board will automatically power up. Once it is on you can set your limit temperatures. I originally set mine to turn on at 25 degrees Celsius and turn off at 0. It seemed to steady out at around 11 degrees when editing and transcoding 4K video. I later increased my lower limit to 15 degrees to avoid the risk of condensation.
If you have any suggestions for improvement, or have any questions we
would love to hear from you and see what you have built. Feel free to comment below! :-)
Have a great day!