Heat sinks maximize the surface of an object to be cooled for heat dissipation to the air. It sounds simple, but there are still many factors to consider! Housing, air speed and the materials used play an important role in the efficiency of the chosen cooling method. The thermal resistance of the material, the design of the cooling fins, the post-treatment, and even the color of the heat sink are factors which are decisive for the efficiency of the cooling, as well as the attachment of the heat sink.
Important Cooling Factors
The cooling capacity of the heat sink. The lower the resistance, the higher the cooling capacity.
The material used partly determines the extent of thermal conductivity. Copper and aluminum are the most widely used materials, though aluminum is the more common choice because copper is more expensive and heavier. Aluminum 6061 and 6063 are widely used with a thermal resistance of 166 and 201 W / mK, respectively.
- Copper: 385 W / mK
- Iron: 55 W / mK
- Tin: 50W/mK
- Steel: 36 W / mK
- Glass: 0.8W/mK
- Air: 0.025W/mK
- Die-casted aluminum materials, from 80 to 100 W/mK
- Thermo-plastic materials, from 3 to 25 W/mK
The design of the fins
The shape and positioning of the fins have a significant impact on performance levels. The fins should, for instance, not be placed too close to one another when air flow is minimal, as that would slow the air flow down too much.
Post-treatment and colour
Post-treatment and colour of the cooling surface determine the level of heat radiation, and a particularly low amount of convection plays an important role in the final output. Heat sinks are often anodised. This process improves on a chemical level the heat radiation of the surface. In most cases a black colour provides the best level of performance.
Heat sink attachment
Small, light heat sinks are mounted with thermal tape or a clip, while larger heat sinks such as with fans or heat pipes require push pins or screws.
In all cases, thermal interfaces play a very important role in the transfer of heat to the heat sink. The interface fills the air gap between the component and the heat sink and helps transfer the heat faster and more effectively.
Standard or Custom
Telerex can resolve your thermal issues with a series of products from a number of leading manufacturers. This ensures a wide selection, fast delivery, and competitive prices. With MechaTronix, we also have our own production facility in Taiwan, which allows us to implement and produce customer-specific modifications to existing products and even to be in a position to deliver complete custom installations. By using various production methods, we can supply you with the ideal cooling solution. Fast, economical, and flexible.
Heat Sink Production Methods
There are primary and secondary production processes. The choice is largely determined by the thermal hot spot (s) and the expected numbers.