Mentor Graphics Corporation (NASDAQ:MENT) today announced the new T3Ster ® DynTIM™ tester, the industry’s cutting-edge method of measuring thermal characteristics of thermal interface materials (TIM). Thermal resistance testing of interface layers within electronics products is critical for product performance, but the characterization of these thin, high-thermal conductivity materials under realistic conditions for their application is extremely challenging using current methods. The Mentor Graphics® DynTIM tester meets the needs of manufacturers today with the ability to control and vary the sample thickness of materials being tested, yielding very accurate results. Engineers can perform more accurate thermal analysis when using the Mentor® T3Ster DynTIM with the Mentor FloTHERM ® and/or FloEFD™ CFD solutions.
Testing systems using today’s current methods (ASTM D5470 Standard Test Method for Thermal Transmission Properties of Thin Thermally Conductive Solid Electrical Insulation Materials and ASTM D5470-06 Standard Test Method of Thermal Transmission Properties of Thermally Conductive Electrical Insulation Materials) do not allow for lower pressure measurements. This causes less than accurate results, nor can the test results be replicated without a 10-20% repeatability error (based on conductivity data reports from various vendors). The Mentor Graphics DynTIM tester, combined with the company’s T3Ster test product, provides the industry’s most accurate method of measuring thermal resistance of TIMs under conditions close to real life applications on a variety of materials at different pre-set thickness levels, such as greases, pastes, phase-changing materials and even specially prepared metallic samples. On average, the DynTIM tester provides TIM measurement accuracy by ±5% with the highest repeatability results, which the industry is currently lacking since most ASTM-based tests are conducted using in-house test systems.
There are two reasons for the superior results provided by Mentor Graphics. First, DynTIM users can test a large number of different TIMs to create a short-list of the best performing materials as possible candidates for the application. Secondly, after the measurement of the material properties and narrowed selection of the TIMs, the T3Ster tester can be used to test these materials in-situ, in their target environment, for the best possible design decision. This total solution is ideal for semiconductor, consumer electronics and TIM manufacturers where controlled manufacturing of materials performance is critical.
“We have been using the T3Ster DynTIM tester and love its speed and ease of use. It uses a very accurate method for characterizing thermal interface materials because it automatically varies the thickness of the sample,” said Dr. Thomas Zahner, quality manager at Osram Opto Semiconductors GmbH. “DynTIM helps us to develop LED lighting modules with excellent thermal performance and to ensure their thermal reliability over the whole product lifetime.”