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Diamond Materials for Thermal Applications
Keywords: Diamond, Composites, Thermal applications
Diamond possesses a remarkable set of properties including the highest known thermal conductivity, stiffness and hardness, combined with exceptional optical properties, low expansion coefficient and low density. These formidable characteristics make diamond the ultimate solution for thermal management problems. The challenge is to harness the properties of diamond in the form of cost-effective products that can be integrated into a wide range of power and optical devices. This talk focuses on different forms of diamond-based materials and reviews problems and solutions to providing the required component shapes and the technology for effective integration. Overall system needs and the importance of coating and bonding technologies to make the best use of the available properties are discussed. The baseline properties of natural and synthetic single crystals are reviewed with examples of single crystal devices. CVD diamond is produced as coatings or free-standing two-dimensional films with a range of thermal and optical properties depending on growth conditions. Results are presented that give an insight into the effect of microstructure and lattice perfection on the properties of CVD materials. Diamond particle composites provide the means to include substantial diamond properties in three-dimensional complex shapes. Most of these composites are made by metal infiltration and require coating of diamond particles to promote wetting. Silicon Cemented Diamond, ScD is a unique composite formed by reactive sintering to form silicon carbide as the primary interlinking phase between the diamond particles. The phases are chemically and mechanically stable with respect to each other which is highly desirable for long-term thermal and environmental stability. ScD is being extensively studied by transmission electron microscopy and thermal atomic force microscopy to explore the relation between microstructure and thermal properties. Heteroepitaxial growth of silicon carbide on certain diamond planes leads to a continuity of lattice planes between the phases that is thought to minimize phonon scattering. Some of the first thermal AFM images of diamond materials have been recently made and give insight into the effects of crystal defects and phase composition on the relative thermal conductivity of grains and phases in the microstructure.
Thomas Obeloer, Business Development Manager
Harris International
Sunnyvale, CA

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