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Design and fabrication of integrated fluidic channels for liquid cooling of a LTCC device
Keywords: LTCC, liquid cooling, micro fluidic
Beside the possibilities low temperature co-fired ceramics (LTCC) offer for electric devices they also enable the fabrication of micro fluidic elements like channels and embedded cavities. Hence, LTCC facilitate the realization of complex and integrated micro fluidic systems. Examples can be applied in many areas like micro fuel cells and reacting chambers for synthesis of chemical compounds. However, for many power applications it is necessary to have short thermal path between a power semiconductor and a heat sink. The poor thermal conductivity of LTCC (3 … 5 W*m-1*K-1) necessitates an opening in the ceramic, to bond the chip directly to the heat sink, which leads to technological challenges like the CTE mismatch between the chip and the heat sink material. In the presented investigation a coolant is pumped through a fluidic channel in the LTCC, to cool down the device. Thermal vias (diameter 260 µm, pitch 500 µm) are added in the ceramic and in the fluidic channel itself, to optimize the thermal path between the chip and the fluidic channel. The design is simulated using the CFD tool ANSYS CFX to estimate the thermal resistance of the device and to evaluate the influence of the thermal vias. The simulation results show a decrease of the thermal resistance of about 76 %, applying thermal vias in the ceramic and in the fluidic channel. The design is fabricated using the DuPont 951 silver system in combination with high purity carbon tape to form the fluidic channels inside the LTCC. A thermal test chip (Delphi PST1-02) is used to generate a thermal load and to measure the junction temperature. The measurements exhibit a reduction of the thermal resistance of about 60 % by adding thermal vias in the ceramic and the fluidic channel.
Tilo Welker,
Ilmenau University of Technology
Ilmenau, Thuringia

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