Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Thermal Analysis

Authors : Vedullavalasa Samavi

Volume/Issue : Volume 3 - 2018, Issue 1 - January

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Because of Complex design and higher demand for Printed Circuit Boards (PCB), thermal design of PCB pose challenges to any heat transfer designer for perfect design. PCB design proceeds on the strength of various assumptions in the predictions of temperatures. Generally, problems were solved for temperatures of a given PCB card without taking all factors into consideration, but the obtained results for those problems are not totally correct. So a forward step was taken by considering all factors to get the correct results. Some of the factors affecting temperature distribution in PCBs are device power dissipations, their distribution in a board, layer-wise thermal conductivity and copper (Cu) spread within a PCB, nature of drill-holes / thermal mass distribution and finally electrical heating effects affecting thermal performance of PCBs. All the above factors bring uncertainty in prediction of temperatures in devices and inferior design generally results in de-lamination of PCB layers. Likewise, Joule Heating phenomenon also impacts the thermal analysis which normally occurs in PCB. Effects of DC drop due to passage of electric current inside Cu-traces, impacts Joule heating effects inside traces of the board and lead to trace level fusing. So in this report the trace level heating was done with different Mechanical computer Aided Engineering (MCAE) software tools by giving the required boundary conditions and results were obtained. The problems were also solved for no-joule heating case and compared.

Keywords : Thermal Conductivity, Joule heating, Trace level Hating.


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