Methods for Measuring Thermal Conductivity in Electronics Cooling Studies


Norwood MA, USA — Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc. (ATS) has published a paper in its monthly eMagazine, Qpedia, that compiles the major methods used by engineers for measuring thermal conductivity. In all, the paper describes and compares 17 proven methods for measuring thermal conductivity in electronics.

In one section of the paper, these methods are grouped according to the time dependence of the heat applied to the sample. Each method is classified under steady-state, periodic or pulsed conditions.

Another section compares the performance of each thermal conductivity measurement method, and provides an idea of sample size and preparation, and the operator skill required. There is also a list of the equipment typically needed to conduct each of these thermal tests.

According to the ATS article, the wide choice of methods may first appear to be a disadvantage. However, once understood for their application – specific benefits ??? the advantages become evident. Materials to be tested, part geometry and part test temperatures will usually be the primary criteria.

As always, the relative cost and expected level of accuracy will also be important factors. Avoiding complicated boundary conditions, irregular part geometry, difficult heater placement/construction and encouraging the difficult task of one-dimensional heat flow will greatly simplify the measurement process.

Multiple benefits will result from reducing the cost and assembly difficulty of the experimental set-up while avoiding those errors often introduced when attempting to construct complicated analytical/mathematical models.

To learn more about the ATS paper on methods for measuring thermal transfer, read the feature in Qpedia, the monthly thermal eMagazine published by ATS.

Current and previous issues can be downloaded at (Click to view–>):

About Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc. (ATS)

Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc. (ATS) is a leading-edge engineering/manufacturing company focused on the thermal management of electronics. Founded in 1989 as a consulting company, ATS has evolved to a complete thermal solutions provider and is world renown for its portfolio of more than 450 high- and ultra-performance heat sinks, research-quality test equipment, and leading-edge R&D. In the interval of three years, ATS has established its own manufacturing center in the U.S., developed strategic partnerships with Asian manufacturers and opened ATS-Europe, its sales and engineering office in Holland.

Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc.
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