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IMAGINE: Drawing Out Heat, Leaving in Performance and Reliability

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  • See key milestones in the evolution of thermal interface materials that help ensure today’s electronics performance and reliability
  • Learn about proven, effective thermal management solutions for basic devices to complex electronics architectures
  • Get expert insights on best practices and material types to meet specific design objectives
  • Discover how advanced thermal management solutions make game-changing differences in a diverse range of industries
  • See brief case studies of electronics applications with thermal management excellence

Kati YorksKati Yorks
Kati Yorks is the Americas AETS (Application Engineering and Technical Service) team leader for Dow Corning Electronics, based in Midland, Michigan. She leads the regional team that provides application and technical support for all of Dow Corning’s Electronics product lines, including: Thermal Management Materials, Adhesives, Encapsulants, Conformal Coatings and Gels. Kati earned Bachelor of Science degrees in both biology and chemistry from two universities in Michigan, and she began her career with Dow Corning in 2007.

The following are questions presented to the speaker by the attendees during the webinar, along with answers to each.

Our factory has a restriction on Silicon, are there other materials that have similar properties and performance?
Answer: There are a variety of other materials with other properties and performance on the market including some that have higher thermal conductivity. Oftentimes there is a tradeoff between thermal conductivity and other properties such as temperature operation range, stress relief and many other attributes that silicone formulations can offer. If you are interested in learning more about overcoming restrictions from your factories/suppliers and good manufacturing processes for all materials, please contact

Is there a TIM that is low viscosity – ie creamy/wet – for ease of application but yet at temperature of 80 deg C + will retain this viscosity after years of use to allow ease of replacement for reworking?
Answer: Yes. As the market needs have changed, Dow Corning has developed new materials, especially thermal compounds that are more resistant to dry out and hardening and maintain their flowability. We’re doing this by optimizing the silicone polymer matrix in these formulations and then testing using accelerated and stress testing conditions to ensure they can perform over the lifetime of the device.

Can a thermally conductive epoxy be used as leak-proof bond for cold plates?
Answer: Whether a thermally conductive material can be used as a barrier to liquids depends on many factors including how compatible the liquid is to the bulk matrix of the polymeric material. Epoxies are generally resistant to a smaller set of liquids than other materials, silicones for example, but given the variety of liquid and material options, it would be best to talk specifics with your materials supplier.

What are the challenges in dispersing thermally conductive fillers and how are these overcome?
Answer: Typically, the more thermally conductive the material, the higher level of thermally conductive filler it has to contain so dispersing those fillers into a formulation can be a challenge. Many thermally conductive materials are abrasive in nature so dispense heads have to be adjusted to handle the different rheology of this material. This is something equipment vendors and materials suppliers, including Dow Corning, collaborate on closely. From a user standpoint, you’ll need to understand what material will work in your application best – a flowable or non-flowable – before choosing equipment to work with. Oftentimes, materials suppliers can modify a material to match the needs of your application so it’s best to talk with them specifically about your application needs.