[Beowulf] Re: overclocking with liquids

Peter St. John peter.st.john at gmail.com
Fri Sep 21 07:42:24 PDT 2007

Thanks all; a couple of people sent me this same article:

They tried immersion in "ion-free" water (which I would not have considered;
I thought that since the water molecule is electrically asymmetrical, it
would always conduct a little...? but I'm not a physicist, I just claim to
be RGB at book signings) which worked for seconds at a time before crashing,
apparently no harm to the h/w though; then vegetable oil (which they felt
looked cool with a transparent plexiglass case) which worked better, but
still too much conductivity for the scale of pins on the CPU. So they sealed
the CPU, and then all seemed fine. They suggest motor oil would be
better. Kyle says the latter link is followup, I haven't read that yet.

On 9/20/07, Peter St. John <peter.st.john at gmail.com> wrote:
> A fellow (concerned with oober gaming rigs) just mentioned to me immersing
> a motherboard in something like vegetable oil, and overclocking the board.
> The liquid has to insulate, and have more heat content than air (easy!), and
> not too low a boiling point, and not be corrosive. No moving parts (such as
> fans) can be immersed, so the disk drives have to be above it etc.
> It made me wonder if you could then pour over a layer of something
> lighter, but with higher vapor pressure, to float on top, and evaporate away
> heat, like alcohol (maybe evaporate too fast).
> I'm picturing stacking trays, like the cart at the cafeteria, for diskless
> compute nodes, and maybe extend the life of older boards.
> This may be nuts but I thought all you chemists and physicists would like
> it :-)
> Peter
> P.S. also Intel (according to slashdot) intends to sell 3-core processors
> (so they can sell quad cores that have a manufacturing defect; reminds me of
> the 487 "SX" math coprocessor, an i486 with a defect in the CPU component).
> Since that means more RAM on the motherboard per core, that might be very
> economical for some types of applications.
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