Thermal Challenges And Moore’s Law

Steven Woo, fellow and distinguished inventor at Rambus, looks at the evolution of graphics cards over a couple of decades and how designs changed to deal with more graphics and more heat, and why smaller, faster and cheaper doesn’t apply in this market. » read more

A Complete Guide To Enclosure Thermal Design… 14 Key Considerations

Enclosure design is an important aspect of system level thermal management to ensure electronics performance and reliability. Learn how to improve enclosure design in this guide covering 14 considerations on thermal management best practice. Examples of areas to focus on for advantages in cooling efficiency are illustrated and where tradeoff decisions are needed. Newly updated as of 2018, this... » read more

Heatsinks Here, There, Everywhere!

Heatsinks are often perceived to be the magic answer to all electronics cooling challenges. A heatsink makes heat spread out, so that it passes to the air over a much larger surface area than it would otherwise. Air then carries the heat away, cooling the electronics that generated it. So, why not place a heatsink on top of any thermally critical component? To read more, click here. » read more

Advanced Packaging Is Suddenly Very Cool

The hottest chip markets today—automotive AI for autonomous and heavily assisted driving, machine learning, virtual and augmented reality—all are beginning to look at advanced packaging as the best path forward for improving performance and reducing power. Over the past four years, which is when 2.5D and fan-out wafer-level packaging first really began garnering interest, these and othe... » read more

Intelligent Power Allocation

The modern System-on-Chip (SoC) has higher thermal dissipation than its previous generations, because of the following factors: Increasing processor frequencies. Decreasing SoC package and device sizes. Higher levels of integration. Static power consumption trends with the most advanced SoC fabrication. Faster frequencies mean faster switching, which means more power consumpt... » read more

Controlling Heat

Modeling on-chip thermal characteristics and chip-package interactions is becoming much more critical for advanced designs, but how to get there isn't always clear. Every chip, based on its target application, has a thermal design power (TDP) target. This is the typical power it can consume without overreaching the acceptable thermal limits in its intended environment. But in order to rate t... » read more

Thermal Issues Getting Worse

Making sure that smartphone you’re holding doesn’t burn your face when you make a call requires a tremendous amount of engineering effort at all levels of the design - the case, the chips, the packaging. The developers of the IP subsystems in that smartphone must adhere to very strict power and energy thresholds so the OEM putting it all together can stick to some semblance of a product des... » read more

Too Hot To Handle

By Ann Steffora Mutschler It used to be that a device could be designed to a thermal design power. The worst case power scenario would be imagined, and the device would be designed with that in mind. But those good old days are gone. Especially for consumer devices, how a device is going to behave with respect to time, or how people are going to use it, must be understood as completely a... » read more

Thermal On My Mind

Oh heat, how I miss thee… in the dead of winter of course. And while heat is a good thing for my garden, it’s not so great when it comes to my, your and everyone’s electronic devices. I’ve been reflecting a lot on this topic since researching thermal management for my article, “Too Hot To Handle.” You see, I have a favorite laptop. It’s a MacBook Pro with a nice, large screen a... » read more