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Thermal Performance Differences Between ASTM D 5470 and "Overclocker" Methods
Keywords: Thermal Conductivity, Over-clocker, ASTM D 5470
A number of commercially available thermal interface compounds were examined using two significantly different test methods to determine their ability to conduct heat. Results were obtained comparing a real-life over-clocking test and the more formal ASTM D-5470 method. The rankings of the commercial compounds heat conducting ability were significantly different in these two tests. Several compounds, with modest thermal conductivity as determined from the ASTM D-5470-05 method, were found to have very good performance in the over-clocker test. The results and methodologies used to compare more than a dozen materials will be discussed. The thermal conductivities were determined by measuring the thermal resistances of these thermal interface materials at several thicknesses by the ASTM D 5470-05 method. The values ranged from 1.2 to 5.7 W/m-K at 36 oC. These commercially available materials were also tested using an over-clocking methodology. This method tests the cooling efficiency of these materials between the processor and the heat sink where the processor speed is successively ramped up and the processor temperature is measured internally. The compounds resulted in overall core processor temperatures ranging from 58 67 oC.
Robert Russo, Summer Intern
Brick , NJ

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