3D, Business, Graphics, Hardware, VR World

Sparkle moves beyond heat-pipes, introduces Diamond-Like Carbon

As cooling requirements on computing components increase, manufacturers are launching ingenious ways to cool down the components. After the rise of copper, heat-pipe and vapor chamber coolers, alternatives such as bubble-pump and liquid metal appeared. However, the latter didn’t enjoy the success (yet), so the race for next viable cooling technique is on.

The latest entrant to the alternative-cooling material market is Sparkle Computer Co. Ltd. Engineers at Sparkle experimented with various graphics cards and earlier today, the company officially debuted Diamond-like Carbon (DLC) radiator for graphics cards.  In order to apply DLC material to the already existing aluminum or copper heatsink, Sparkle used Plasma Enhanced CVD (PECVD) technique, but in order to make this technique more consumer-friendly, marketing came up with the term Diamonds Sputtering technology (DS).

This puny cooler showed great promise. We wonder what will happen once that DLC is applied to a large 2-slot cooler...

This puny cooler showed great promise. We wonder what will happen once that DLC is applied to a large 2-slot cooler...

Now, to clear any potential confusion, DLC is not a replacement material for aluminum, carbon or something similar. DLC is used as a coating on existing material, and it will enhance its thermal properties. Achieved results are quite interesting – according to Sparkle, their conventionally-cooled GeForce 9500GT heats up to 88C. After Diamond-like Carbon membrane was applied to the same radiator, temperatures dropped by five degrees Celsius, down to 83C. Now, to make things more interesting, heat is not the only issue that DLC effectively deals with. Apparently, this super-hard carbon coating also increases resistance to bending and scratches, making this material very desireable for copper fins, that just “love” to bend after just looking at them. 😉

It will be interesting to see future GeForce graphics cards coming from Sparkle, since now the company can use its Diamond Sputtering Tech on regular Nvidia-supplied coolers as well, manufacturing DLC-clad graphics cards from their launch onwards. If price premium is not an issue, this technology is one interesting newcomer to watch.