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An ion pump is a device that can cool and filter air without the use of moving mechanical parts. Ion pumps can be a good alternative to other cooling methods such as forced air cooling, which can be noisy and is more limited in its cooling abilities. Ion pumps are most commonly used to cool microprocessor chips.
An ion pump works by creating high voltage, which removes some of the electrons from atoms in the air. This creates positive ions, which are attracted to negatively charges electrodes, creating continuous air movement in the system.
The transistor density and operation mode of microchips create significant amounts of heat for their physical surface. This heat must be removed in order to ensure that these components continue to operate in a reliable and consistent manner. Cooling microchips and other computer components is an important issue that must be addressed in PCs as well as in servers and mainframe computers.