Liquid Gases on Robot as coolant

We were having some heat problems with some of the electronic circuits on our robot. Is it legal to have liquid gases (nitrogen, helium, etc) as a coolant on our minibot or hostbot?

In what ways are you having heating problems on the robot? Although liquid nitrogen may be possible (and likely the safest of all liquid gases, it probably won’t pass inspection on your robot. The reasoning would be that LN can be a major safety hazard due to it’s low temperature, although there is no explicit rule saying it isn’t allowed (assuming the no hydraulic fluid rule doesn’t apply in this case).

Supposedly, it might be allowed for you to spray the stuff down before a match with compressed, supercooled gas, to lower the initial temperature well below zero, and hopefully it’ll slow any overheating during a match. Just a theory, though.

I believe this would be illegal under the the rules that govern stored energy.

<R01> Energy used by FRC ROBOTS, (i.e., stored at the start of a MATCH), shall come only from the following sources:
A. Electrical energy derived from the onboard 12V battery (see Rule <R34> for specifications and further details).
B. Compressed air stored in the pneumatic system, stored at a maximum pressure of 120 PSI.
C. A change in the altitude of the ROBOT center of gravity.
D. Storage achieved by deformation of ROBOT parts.

Try using the muffin fans that came with the kit.

What kind of circuit are you using that the heat generated can’t be disipated by a heatsink/fan?

the kit of parts gives you four large fans and alot of smaller ones, try using those

also, I think you are overlooking the legal and logistical aspect of liquid gases; they are expensive and I believe you need a license of some sort to get them.

There’s no way this could break R01, if it’s only a coolant.

There are many rules which in all likelihood will be interpreted, either individually or in combination, to implicitly disallow it:



Yes way. Try it and see.

The energy stored in the compressed N2 tank is what causes the coolant to spray out.

This, in combination with other rules (see earlier post) will almost certainly disallow your idea.


But if it’s in a tank, it’s not going to be a coolant. I was picturing an open container, which, while dangerous, can only absorb energy and evaporate (similar to a heatsink, so this question confuses me unless it’s for electronics which cannot be easily accessed), NEVER store it. So yes, theoretically it can store energy if the heat absorbed from the environment is not allowed to escape back in the form of N2 gas.

Compressed air, as I am led to believe, means compressed air, not a liquid form of a gas. The rules on de-pressurizing gas would be incapable of being applied.

Are you saying you want to submerge your circuit board in an open container of liquid nitrogen?


R02 also applies as liquid n2 is caustic to the skin.

No, although I suppose someone might be capable of doing that. I was rather suggesting that pouring a rather minute amount of LN, or a similar supercooled, non-toxic gas onto the circuitry, and letting it evaporate in place of the circuits heating up, is technically the only feasible way to keep the circuitry cooled without completely enclosing the system, and thus removing most of liquid gas’s benefits.

I’m not advocating doing any of this, aside from spraying it down with compressed air every so slightly before a match if circuit heating is a real issue, due to the extreme dangers of burning if it’s mishandled and the usage is done poorly; just saying it could, ever so possibly, be legal.

Pouring liquid N2 directly on your circuitry will almost certainly destroy it.


Most likely. It’s why I mentioned using canned air and spraying it upside down prior to a match, rather than storing it on the robot.

What could go wrong!

I believe that’s supposed to be:

What could go wrong… go wrong… go wrong…


Well, at least it isn’t electrically conductive.

Sure, it might make everything brittle and shatter, but at least you won’t have a short! :stuck_out_tongue:

how is your electronic board heating up in the first place, nothing should overheat except perhaps a breaker, batteries can get a little warm too i guess.

team 20 was actually packing ice on their motors (or i assume it was the motors) between the matches in the finals at BAE

This wins this week’s award for “Most Bizarre Thread”.
Carry on.