Types of Thermal Interface Materials and How They are Used

Thermal interface materials include thermal pads, thermal tape, thermal grease and thermal putty. By filling the gap (0.1mm-20mm) between the chip/heating element and the heat sink, the medium for accelerating heat transfer can effectively conduct heat from the chip to the heat sink fin, thus reducing the chip temperature, increasing the chip life and product performance.

Thermal modules are generally composed of a thermal interface material, a heat sink fin and a fan. Heat is transferred from the surface of the chip through the thermal interface material (e.g. thermal pad, thermal tape, thermal putty, etc.) and onto the heat sink fin. The better the thermal conductivity of the thermal interface material and the larger the area, the better the thermal dissipation effect. If the heat generated by the chip is high, or if the machine has little space and is not well ventilated, a cooling fan is often added to the thermal module to move the heat away from it more quickly.
These are commonly used in such products as notebooks, laptop computers, telecom devices, LCD TVs, LED lighting, power supply units (PSUs), DDR memory modules, etc.
As the name implies, thermal interface materials are heat transferring media, and the three different material types and their composition are described below:
1. Thermal adhesive (thermal paste / potting compounds) - thermosetting potting compounds consisting of epoxy resin / silica gel and metal oxide powder
2. Thermal tape - double-sided tape with acrylic base, silicone base, and special reinforcement carriers (fiberglass mesh, polyimide), etc. of varying types and functions
3. Thermal pads (heat dissipation silica gel, thermally conductive silicone)- in solid sheet form and phase change material (liquid above 50°C)

The key elements in selecting thermal material:
1. Consider the nature of the material required: silicone or non-silicone (e.g. acrylic base, epoxy base)
2. Thermal conductivity: 0.98 W/mK-12 W/mK for general thermal interface materials, 400 W/mK, 1500-1800 W/mK for special materials, etc.
3. Hardness: Shore00 25-ShoreA 90 available

Compression rate:
Note that the compression rate should be as stated in the specification to achieve optimum thermal conductivity.

Operating environment:
Note that the environment in which the thermal material is used should be as indicated in the specification to ensure the safety of the product during use.