© 2013

Miniature Joule-Thomson Cryocooling

Principles and Practice


  • The book offers a broad and comprehensive treatise of the subject with over 1000 references included

  • This book is a modern, updated work dedicated to miniature Joule-Thomson cryocooling by a unique and accomplished combination of writers

  • The book includes a discussion and analysis of many significant patents in the field of cryogenics


Part of the International Cryogenics Monograph Series book series (ICMS)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxxviii
  2. Part I

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 3-36
  3. Theoretical Aspects

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 37-37
    2. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 39-72
    3. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 73-118
    4. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 119-156
  4. Practical Aspects

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 157-157
    2. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 159-210
    3. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 211-257
    4. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 259-274
  5. Part IV

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 275-275
    2. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 277-334
  6. Part V

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 335-335
    2. Ben-Zion Maytal, John M. Pfotenhauer
      Pages 337-365
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 367-380

About this book


This book is the first in English being entirely dedicated to Miniature Joule-Thomson Cryocooling. The category of Joule-Thomson (JT) cryocoolers takes us back to the roots of cryogenics, in 1895, with figures like Linde and Hampson. The "cold finger" of these cryocoolers is compact, lacks moving parts, and sustains a large heat flux extraction at a steady temperature. Potentially, they cool down unbeatably fast. For example, cooling to below 100 K (minus 173 Celsius) might be accomplished within only a few seconds by liquefying argon. A level of about 120 K can be reached almost instantly with krypton. Indeed, the species of coolant plays a central role dictating the size, the intensity and the level of cryocooling. It is the JT effect that drives these cryocoolers and reflects the deviation of the "real" gas from the ideal gas properties. The nine chapters of the book are arranged in five parts.

The Common Principle of Cyrocoolers shared across the broad variety of cryocooler types
Theoretical Aspects: the JT effect and its inversion, cooling potential of coolants, the liquefaction process, sizing of heat exchangers, level of pressurization, discharge of pressure vessels
Practical Aspects: modes of operation (fast cooldown, continuous, multi-staging, hybrid cryocoolers), pressure sources, configuration, construction and technologies, flow adjustment, MEMS, open and closed cycle, cooldown process and similarity, transient behavior
Mixed Coolant cryocooling: theory, practice and applications
Special Topics: real gas choked flow rates, gas purity, clog formation, optimal fixed orifice, modeling, cryosurgical devices, warming by the inverse JT effect

The theoretical aspects may be of interest not only to those working with cryocoolers but also for others with a general interest in "real" gas thermodynamics, such as, for example, the inversion of the JT effect in its differential and integral forms, and the exceptional behavior of the quantum gases.

A detailed list of references for each chapter comprises a broad literature survey. It consists of more than 1,200 relevant publications and 450 related patents. The systematically organized content, arranged under a thorough hierarchy of headings, supported by 227 figures and 41 tables, and accompanied by various chronological notes of evolution, enables a pleasant reading experience.

Dr. Ben-Zion Maytal is a Senior Researcher at Rafael-Advanced Defense Systems, Ltd., and an Adjunct Senior Teaching Fellow at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel.

Prof. John M. Pfotenhauer holds a joint appointment in the Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Physics at the University of Wisconsin - Madison.


Joule-Thomson cryocooling Linde-Hampson cycles infrared detection systems multi-stage cryocoolers real gas thermodynamics

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Missiles and NCW DivisionRafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd.HaifaIsrael
  2. 2.Dept. Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Wisconsin, MadisonMadisonUSA

Bibliographic information