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John O | January 2019

Low-profile thermal solutions required for high-density boards in electronics systems

By Josh Perry, Editor


A number of industries, including telecommunications, Internet of Things (IoT), broadcast, medical, and more, are using boards and systems with more power and components and less space for cooling solutions, such as heat sinks, according to a new article from Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc. (ATS), a leading-edge engineering company based in Norwood, Mass.


With today’s high-density boards, low-profile solutions are required to ensure proper thermal management even in tight spaces. (Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc.)


“Standard heat sink sizes are too large for many telecom systems, module and blade servers, or IoT gateways, where card-to-card and internal spacing is limited and may not be designed to handle the lower airflow that is the result of numerous components packed into tight spaces,” the article noted. “With space and airflow at a premium, engineers need low-profile solutions that are lightweight, compact, and will not sacrifice thermal performance.”


To meet those specific low-profile needs, ATS developed blueICE™ heat sinks, which are ultra-low-profile and lightweight. They can be attached with thermal tape, so no mechanical attachment technology is required. The heat sinks can squeeze into small spaces and are designed to be effective in low airflow environments.


In addition, ATS has designed low-profile versions of their ultra-high-performance maxiFLOW™ heat sinks, which utilize a spread-fin array to increase the surface area and maximize heat transfer from the component. Using either maxiGRIP™ or superGRIP™ attachment, which had minimal additional footprint, these heat sinks can perform even in systems where airflow is limited.


Heat pipes and vapor chambers are also ideal for dense boards or systems where space and airflow are at a premium. Both technologies can be used to spread heat away from components to either a heat sink or the chassis/system enclosure.


To read more about these low-profile options, visit https://www.qats.com/cms/2019/01/04/low-profile-thermal-solutions-required-for-cooling-high-density-boards.

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