Electronic equipment manufacturers are increasingly more focused on achieving high efficiency levels for their circuit designs in response to global concerns about the impact on the environment. However, the thermal benefits of high efficiency circuit design are often offset by the heat generated due to the trend for more densely packed components. Factors such as limited ventilation in portable electronics equipment, due to the need to seal enclosures against moisture and dust ingress, also contribute to the overall thermal management problem.
As electronics have become more prevalent and components and product designs have shrunk, so the choice and diversity of thermal management materials has had to evolve to meet the new challenges, according to a recent article by Chomerics Europe applications engineer Mark Carter.
The choice available to the design engineer has expanded to include an array of new materials and approaches, including fully cured gels, insulator pads, adhesive tapes and gap filling pads.