Tag Archives: heat sink clip

ARM Microprocessors and ATS superGRIP: Attached at the Clip

Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc., (ATS), has introduced a line of heat sinks compatible with the Sitara ARM Microprocessor family from Texas Instruments.

AM1707 from Texas Instruments

AM1707 from Texas Instruments

The Sitara ARM Microprocessors feature ARM Cortex-8 and ARM9 MPUs, which are used in a wide variety of Industrial, Medical, and Consumer Electronics applications.

The AM17x family consists of low-power ARM microprocessors that enable OEMs and ODMs to maximize product offerings by providing high processing performance life, advanced operating systems and rich user interfaces. Compatible operating systems include Neutrino, Integrity, Windows, Embedded CE, Linux, VXWorks and Android.

ATS patented maxiFLOW heat sinks with superGRIP clip attachment ensure long-term product reliability and maximum performance from the Sitara ARM Microprocessors. maxiFLOW high performance BGA heat sinks feature a low profile, spread fin array that maximizes surface area for more effective convection air cooling. The unique maxiFLOWTM design provides thermal performance that is 30-200% better than conventional heat sinks.

ATS' maxiFLOW Heat Sink with superGRIP Attachment

ATS’ maxiFLOW Heat Sink with superGRIP Attachment

maxiFLOW is available with pre-assembled phase change material, maxiGRIP clip attachments, and superGRIP clip attachments. The superGRIP attachment system features a plastic frame clip that fastens securely around the perimeter of a component and a metal spring clip that slips through a heat sinks fin field and locks securely to both ends of the plastic frame. The resulting superGRIP assembly applies steady even pressure to the component throughout the product lifecycle, improving thermal performance and long-term reliability. The ATS superGRIP heat sink attachment system permits the use of high performance phase changing thermal interface materials that improves heat transfer by as much as 20 times more than typical double-sided adhesive thermal tapes. It also allows for the heat sink to be detached and reattached without damaging the component or the PCB, an important feature for applications where PCB rework and ease of assembly and disassembly are important. The full range of ATS products compatible with Texas Instruments products can be viewed in the new heat sink selection tool on http://qats.com/Distributor/AE-Dist.php

To learn more about maxiFLOW heat sinks and the superGRIP clip attachment, please visit www.qats.com, email ats-hq@qats.com, or call 781-769-2800.

Getting the Maximum Performance from Heat Sink Clips

As power levels for board components have risen, thermal engineers have been forced to design larger and more innovative heat sinks than ever before. Along with the thermal challenge has come the mechanical challenge of attaching these heat sinks to the components in a reliable fashion.

One of the most popular methods uses some form of clip. These are low in price and easily applied. Smart engineering has led to clip systems that provide strong, even pressure well beyond the working life of the component. They hold their heat sinks tight even when dropped or shocked, but they can be unclipped manually whenever it’s necessary.

Clips that attach directly to the component provide an advantage over other clip types, (e.g. z-clips) in that no holes are required in the PWB. The ATS maxiGRIP is an example of such an attachment. maxiGRIP uses a plastic frame clip that attaches directly to the component and provides a mounting platform for a custom spring clip (Figure 5).

The frame clip is installed, using a special tool which expands all four sides of the clip simultaneously, allowing the clip to be placed directly over the component package (A keep out area is usually required). Once released, tabs on each side engage and secure the clip to the component, creating a secure mounting platform for the spring clip. The spring clip, which is designed to provide a very precise load, is then installed to hold the heat sink in place, maintaining continuous pressure at the heat sink component interface. The maxiGRIP assembly has a big advantage over other heat sink attachment methods in that it allows for the use of high performance phase change interface materials.

Extensive FEA and shock and vibration testing of the maxiGRIP assembly have been done to provide a carefully engineered heat sink attachment solution with a high-level of reliability.