The Comparison of Thermal Interface Material

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Thermal Interface Materials are as follows: Thermal Conductive Double-side Tape, Thermal Grease, Thermal Conductive Pad and Phase-change Materials. Comparison between thermal insulation materials from AOK

The followings are the advantages and disadvantages and applications:

Thermal Conductive Double-side Tape: 

This type adhesives offer excellent heat transfer and high voltage isolation. Epoxy adhesives offer low shrinkage, and coefficients of thermal expansion comparable to copper or aluminum. They bond readily to metals, glass, ceramics, and most plastics.

Advantages: Generally, its thickness is lower than 0.3mm. It has strong natural inherent tackiness which makes it easy to fix small heat sink.

Disadvantages: It is too thin to fill the big gaps and it cannot be reused. What’s more, its thermal conductivity is low.

Application: it can be used between small power sources and small heat sink to fix the heat sink.

Thermal Grease:

This type of materials enhance heat transfer across the interface between the semiconductor case and the heat sink.

Advantages: It is in state of semiliquid. Its thermal conductivity is relatively high. It can be used as a thin layer and suitable for gap-filling. It has low thermal resistance and low cost.

Disadvantages: It can not be painted too thick and its thickness should be lower than 0.2mm. It is not suitable for painting in a large area and it’s not easy for operation. Thermal Grease is easy to be aging and dry after working for a long time. And it’s thermal resistance will be increased. It has low volatile performance.

Application: It can be used between high power heat producer and heat sink with fixed device.

Thermal Conductive Pad:

This type pads are thicker than double-sided tapes, but can be provided without adhesive if removal of the pad may be necessary. Pads can also be either electrically conductive or isolating. Performance of the interface pad is dependent on maintenance of correct, constant mounting pressure.

Advantages: It is suitable for gap filling and has wide range of thickness. It can be used to make up the tolerance. It is excellent in electronic isolation and has low compression ratio. It is shock-proof to some degree and it has natural inherent tackiness on both side. It’s easy for operation.

Disadvantages: Thermal Conductive Pad with its thickness below 0.5mm is hard to make since its workmanship is complex and it has high thermal resistance and high cost.

Main Application: It is used for filling the big gaps between heat producer and heat sink.

Phase-change Materials:

Advantages: It is in form of schistose under normal temperature with thin thickness and excellent for operation. It will change into the form of semiliquid under high temperature with its strong gap-filling property. In the process of phase change, it has powerful heat absorption capacity.

Disadvantages: It is not easy for storage and transport. Its cost is relatively high.

Application: Heat dissipation modules.

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