Designing Thermal Management Systems for Electronics Through Simulations

Post Syndicated from IEEE Spectrum Recent Content full text original

The impact of increasingly powerful electronics on our society cannot be overstated. These more powerful electronics produce significant heat that must be dissipated to prevent premature component failure. Engineers that design electronics face a significant thermal management challenge. Electrical engineers frequently seek to increase the power of critical components, and keeping these components cool represents a significant design challenge. This design task becomes even more challenging when the cooling systems rely on natural convection instead of forced convection from fans, due to the relatively short life expectancy of fans.

One solution to this engineering challenge is to use multiphysics software tools to improve the accuracy of the engineer’s calculations in comparison to analytic and single-physics simulation solutions. These simulations include heat generated by the component, airflow around the component, and radiative heat transfer between the component and the surroundings. Heat generation due to resistive heating in the board can be included with heat generated from components to determine the heat generated within the system. Airflow through the system due to either forced or natural convection can also be analyzed. For many systems, radiation must be considered for accurate temperature predictions due to the large amount of heat transfer that occurs via this mechanism in many electronic designs.

In this presentation, guest speakers Kyle Koppenhoefer and Joshua Thomas from AltaSim Technologies will discuss the development of an electronics cooling problem subjected to a complex thermal environment. The webinar will also include a live demo in the COMSOL Multiphysics® software and a Q&A session.