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Measuring the heat generated by electronic components

Identify patterns of heat generation and causes of increasing temperature with heat flow (heat flux) measurement

Increases in the speed and power level of electronic components are combining with shrinking package sizes to drive significant increases in heat generation density. Consequently, the heat design of electric circuits is becoming extremely important. Physically, temperature changes are always accompanied by the movement of heat. These movements of thermal energy can be measured using a heat flow logger and a heat flow sensor*. Since this approach allows you to measure the manner in which electronic components generate heat with a high degree of sensitivity, it is possible to assess heat generation during different operational regimes, for example to determine the amount of heat generated during different types of processing.

Individual heat flow sensors have different sensitivities, and it is difficult to configure scaling when using such sensors with a standard data logger. However, the Heat Flow Logger LR8432-20, which is specifically designed to measure heat flux, makes it easy to configure the sensitivity. In addition, the Z2018 (with a cable length of 1.5 m) and Z2019 (with a cable length of 5 m) flexible heat flow sensors have small sensor units that measure approximately 6 mm × 5.5 mm, allowing them to be affixed to electronic components such as ICs. To measure efficiently, the Hioki flexible heat flow sensors Z2012-01, Z2013-01, Z2014-01, Z2015-01, Z2016-01, and Z2017-01, which have a built-in thermocouple, are optimal.
* Sensors used to measure movements of thermal energy are known as heat flux sensors, heat flow sensors, or heat flow meters.

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