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Publication numberUS20010053063 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 09/841,087
Publication dateDec 20, 2001
Filing dateApr 24, 2001
Priority dateJun 20, 2000
Also published asUS6249434, US6356447, US6519156, US20020030973
Publication number09841087, 841087, US 2001/0053063 A1, US 2001/053063 A1, US 20010053063 A1, US 20010053063A1, US 2001053063 A1, US 2001053063A1, US-A1-20010053063, US-A1-2001053063, US2001/0053063A1, US2001/053063A1, US20010053063 A1, US20010053063A1, US2001053063 A1, US2001053063A1
InventorsChristopher Scafidi
Original AssigneeAdc Telecommunications, Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Surface mounted conduction heat sink
US 20010053063 A1
Abstract
A system and method for conducting heat from electrical devices mounted on a circuit board is disclosed. A heat sink for conducting the heat is provided that includes a pair of substantially parallel vertical legs and a horizontal member coupled between the pair of substantially parallel vertical legs to form a “U” shape. The horizontal member includes an outer surface and an inner surface both having a layer of thermal interface material. The heat sink is surface mountable to a heat sink mounting pad on a surface of a printed circuit board. The heat sink mounting pad is adjacent to and thermally coupled to a heat transfer pad of an electronic device. The heat sink is thermally coupled to the electronic device.
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Claims(62)
What is claimed is:
1. An electronic module, comprising:
a printed circuit board;
a first heat transfer pad on a surface of the printed circuit board;
an electronic device having a top surface and a bottom surface, wherein the bottom surface includes a second heat transfer pad that is coupled to the first heat transfer pad;
a heat sink mounting pad on the surface of the printed circuit board and located adjacent to the first heat transfer pad, wherein the heat sink mounting pad is coupled to the first heat transfer pad; and
a heat sink coupled to the heat sink mounting pad, wherein the heat sink is thermally coupled to the electronic device.
2. The electronic module of
claim 1
, wherein the electronic device is surface mounted to the first heat transfer pad.
3. The electronic module of
claim 1
, wherein the heat sink is thermally coupled to an outer housing that encloses the printed circuit board.
4. The electronic module of
claim 1
, wherein the heat sink is surface mounted to the heat sink mounting pad.
5. The electronic module of
claim 1
, wherein the heat sink mounting pad comprises a pair of heat sink mounting pads.
6. The electronic module of
claim 5
, wherein the electronic device is located between the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
7. The electronic module of
claim 5
, wherein the heat sink is “U” shaped and each of first and second legs of the “U” are coupled to one of the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
8. The electronic module of
claim 1
, wherein the heat sink mounting pad is coupled to the first heat transfer pad via an interconnecting lead.
9. The electronic module of
claim 1
, wherein the first heat transfer pad and the heat sink mounting pad are made of copper.
10. The electronic module of
claim 3
, wherein the outer housing includes a thermal interface layer that aids in drawing heat from the electronic device.
11. An electronic module, comprising:
a printed circuit board;
a first heat transfer pad on a first surface of the printed circuit board;
an electronic device having a top surface and a bottom surface, wherein the bottom surface includes a second heat transfer pad that is coupled to the first heat transfer pad;
a pair of heat sink mounting pads on the first surface of the printed circuit board, thermally coupled to and adjacent to the first heat transfer pad;
a heat sink including:
a horizontal member; and
a pair of substantially parallel extending members coupled to opposing edges of the horizontal surface so as to form a “U” shape; and
wherein the heat sink is coupled to the pair of heat sink mounting pads via the pair of extending members and the horizontal member is thermally coupled to the top surface of the electronic device.
12. The electronic module of
claim 11
, wherein the electronic device is surface mounted to the first heat transfer pad.
13. The electronic module of
claim 11
, wherein the heat sink is surface mounted to the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
14. The electronic module of
claim 11
, wherein the heat sink is thermally coupled to an outer housing that encloses the printed circuit board.
15. The electronic module of
claim 11
, wherein the electronic device is located between the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
16. The electronic module of
claim 11
, wherein the pair of heat sink mounting pads are coupled to the first heat transfer pad via interconnecting leads.
17. The electronic module of
claim 11
, wherein the first heat transfer pad and the pair of heat sink mounting pads are made of copper.
18. The electronic module of
claim 14
, wherein the outer housing includes a thermal interface layer that aids in drawing heat from the electronic device.
19. An electronic module, comprising:
a printed circuit board;
a first heat transfer pad on a primary surface of the printed circuit board;
an electronic device having a top surface and a bottom surface, wherein the bottom surface includes a second heat transfer pad that is coupled to the first heat transfer pad;
a heat sink on a secondary surface of the printed circuit board, the heat sink straddling at least one component on the secondary surface; and
a via through the printed circuit board filled with a thermally conductive material, wherein the via couples the first heat transfer pad to the heat sink.
20. The electronic module of
claim 19
, wherein the electronic device is surface mounted to the first heat transfer pad.
21. The electronic module of
claim 19
, wherein the heat sink is thermally coupled to an outer housing that encloses the printed circuit board.
22. The electronic module of
claim 19
, wherein the heat sink is surface mounted to the printed circuit board.
23. The electronic module of
claim 19
, wherein the heat sink is “U” shaped and each of first and second legs of the “U” are coupled to the first heat sink transfer pad by thermally conductive vias through the printed circuit board.
24. The electronic module of
claim 19
, wherein the first heat transfer pad is made of copper.
25. The electronic module of
claim 21
, wherein the outer housing includes a thermal interface layer that aids in drawing heat from the heat sink.
26. The electronic module of
claim 21
, wherein the electronic device is thermally coupled to the outer housing via a thermal interface material.
27. An electronic module, comprising:
a printed circuit board having a primary surface and a secondary surface;
a first heat transfer pad on the primary surface of the printed circuit board;
a first electronic device having a top and a bottom surface, wherein the bottom surface includes a second heat transfer pad that is coupled to the first heat transfer pad;
a second electronic device coupled to the secondary surface;
a heat sink mounting pad on the primary surface, wherein the heat sink mounting pad is adjacent to and thermally coupled to the first heat transfer pad;
a first heat sink coupled to the heat sink mounting pad, the first heat sink is thermally coupled to the first electronic device;
a via through the printed circuit board, the via filled with a thermally conductive material; and
a second heat sink on the secondary surface, wherein the second heat sink is coupled to the first heat transfer pad by the via, the second heat sink straddling at least one component on the secondary surface.
28. The electronic module of
claim 27
, wherein the first electronic device is surface mounted to the first heat transfer pad.
29. The electronic module of
claim 27
, wherein the first heat sink is thermally coupled to outer housing that encloses the printed circuit board.
30. The electronic module of
claim 27
, wherein the first heat sink is surface mounted to the heat sink mounting pad and the second heat sink is surface mounted to the secondary surface of the printed circuit board.
31. The electronic module of
claim 27
, wherein the heat sink mounting pad comprises a pair of heat sink mounting pads.
32. The electronic module of
claim 31
, wherein the first electronic device is located between the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
33. The electronic module of
claim 31
, wherein the heat sink is “U” shaped and each of first and second legs of the “U” are coupled to one of the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
34. The electronic module of
claim 27
, wherein the heat sink mounting pad is coupled to the first heat transfer pad via an interconnecting lead.
35. The electronic module of
claim 27
, wherein the first heat transfer pad and the heat sink mounting pad are made of copper.
36. The electronic module of
claim 27
, wherein the second heat sink is thermally coupled to an outer housing that encloses the printed circuit board, wherein the outer housing includes a thermal interface layer which aids in drawing heat from the second heat sink.
37. The electronic module of
claim 29
, wherein the outer housing includes a thermal interface layer that aids in drawing heat from the first electronic device.
38. An electronic module, comprising:
an environmentally sealed housing;
a transmitter/receiver module housing thermally coupled to the electronic module;
a printed circuit board having a primary and a secondary surface, wherein the primary surface includes a first heat transfer pad and a heat sink mounting pad adjacent to and thermally coupled to the first heat transfer pad, wherein the printed circuit board is thermally coupled to the transmitter/receiver module housing;
an electronic device having a top and a bottom surface, wherein the bottom surface includes a second heat transfer pad that is coupled to the first heat transfer pad; and
a heat sink coupled to the heat sink mounting pad, wherein the heat sink is thermally coupled to both the electronic device and the transmitter/receiver module housing.
39. The electronic module of
claim 38
, further comprising a first thermal interface layer between the heat sink and the transmitter/receiver module housing and a second thermal interface layer between the heat sink and the electronic device.
40. The electronic module of
claim 38
, further comprising a heat sink on the secondary surface of the printed circuit board, wherein the heat sink is coupled to the first heat transfer pad by a thermally conductive via through the printed circuit board and wherein the heat sink is thermally coupled to the transmitter/receiver module housing.
41. The electronic module of
claim 40
, further comprising a thermal interface layer between the heat sink and the transmitter/receiver module housing.
42. The electronic module of
claim 38
, wherein the first heat transfer pad and the heat sink mounting pad are made of copper.
43. The electronic module of
claim 38
, wherein the heat sink mounting pad comprises a pair of heat sink mounting pads.
44. The electronic module of
claim 43
, wherein the electronic device is located between the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
45. The electronic module of
claim 43
, wherein the heat sink is “U” shaped and each of first and second legs of the “U” are coupled to one of the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
46. An electronic module, comprising:
an environmentally sealed housing;
a transmitter/receiver module housing thermally coupled to the environmentally sealed housing;
a printed circuit board having a primary and a secondary surface, wherein the primary surface includes a first heat transfer pad, wherein the printed circuit board is coupled to the transmitter/receiver module housing;
an electronic device having a top and a bottom surface, wherein the bottom surface includes a second heat transfer pad that is coupled to the first heat transfer pad; and
a heat sink on the secondary surface of the printed circuit board, the heat sink straddling at least one component on the secondary surface, wherein the heat sink is coupled to the first heat transfer pad by a thermally conductive via through the printed circuit board and wherein the heat sink is thermally coupled to the transmitter/receiver module housing.
47. The electronic module of
claim 46
, further comprising a thermal interface layer between the heat sink and the transmitter/receiver module housing.
48. The electronic module of
claim 46
, wherein the first heat transfer pad is made of copper.
49. The electronic module of
claim 47
, wherein the heat sink is “U” shaped having a pair vertical legs and a horizontal member coupled between the vertical legs, wherein each of the pair of legs coupled to the first heat transfer pad by one of a pair of thermally conductive vias.
50. A heat sink, comprising:
a pair of substantially parallel vertical legs;
a horizontal member coupled between the pair of substantially parallel vertical legs to form a “U” shape, wherein the horizontal member includes an outer surface and an inner surface both having a layer of thermal interface material; and
wherein the heat sink is surface mountable to a heat sink mounting pad on a surface of a printed circuit board, wherein the heat sink mounting pad is adjacent to and thermally coupled to a heat transfer pad of an electronic device, wherein the heat sink is adapted to be thermally coupled to the electronic device.
51. The heat sink of
claim 50
, wherein the heat sink mounting pad includes a pair of heat sink mounting pads.
52. The heat sink of
claim 51
, wherein the electronic device is between the pair of heat sink mounting pads.
53. The heat sink of
claim 52
, wherein the inner surface of the horizontal member is thermally coupled to the electronic device.
54. The heat sink of
claim 50
, wherein the outer surface of the horizontal member is thermally coupled to an outer housing that encloses the printed circuit board.
55. A heat sink, comprising:
a pair of substantially parallel vertical legs;
a horizontal member coupled between the pair of substantially parallel vertical legs to form a “U” shape, wherein the horizontal member includes an outer surface and an inner surface both having a layer of thermal interface material;
wherein the heat sink is surface mountable to a first surface of a printed circuit board to receive heat from a heat transfer pad on a second surface of the printed circuit board by a thermally conductive via through the printed circuit board; and
wherein the heat transfer pad is coupled to an electronic device.
56. The heat sink of
claim 55
, wherein the outer surface of the horizontal member is thermally coupled to an outer housing that encloses the printed circuit board.
57. A method of conducting heat away from an electronic device, the method comprising:
drawing heat from an electronic device to a first heat transfer pad coupled to the bottom of the electronic device;
drawing the heat from the heat transfer pad to a second transfer pad coupled to the first transfer pad, wherein the second transfer pad is on the primary surface of a printed circuit board;
transferring the heat from the second transfer pad to a heat sink that is adjacent to and thermally coupled to the second transfer pad on the primary surface of the printed circuit board;
conducting the heat from the heat sink to an outer housing that encloses the printed circuit board, wherein the outer housing includes a thermally conductive layer between the outer housing and the heat sink; and
dispersing the heat from the outer housing to ambient air.
58. A method of manufacturing a heat sink, the method comprising:
coupling the electronic device to a first side of a printed circuit board via a second heat transfer pad of the electronic device;
straddling the electronic device with a “U” shaped heat sink so that the upper surface of the electronic device is thermally coupled to the inner horizontal surface of the heat sink; and
coupling the first and second legs of the heat sink to the first and second heat sink mounting pads, respectively.
59. The method of
claim 58
, wherein coupling the electronic device to the first side of a printed circuit comprises surface mounting the electronic device to a copper pad of the first side of the printed circuit board.
60. The method of
claim 58
, wherein coupling the first and second legs of the heat sink to the first and second heat sink mounting pads comprises surface mounting the first and second legs of the heat sink to the first and second heat sink mounting pads.
61. The method of
claim 58
, wherein the inner and outer horizontal surfaces of the heat sink comprise a thermal interface material to aid in heat transfer.
62. The method of
claim 58
, further comprising coupling the outer horizontal surface of the heat sink to an inner surface of an environmentally sealed housing.
Description
TECHNICAL FIELD

[0001] The present invention is related to heat sinks for printed circuit boards, and more particularly to a system and method of transferring heat from electronic devices using a surface mounted conduction heat sink.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

[0002] Circuit boards are becoming more and more densely packed with electronic devices as the need for power, memory and additional capabilities increases. As a result the heat generated by these electronic devices also increases. The heat that is generated by an electronic device must be transferred away from the electronic device or the performance of the electronic device(s) will deteriorate. The problem of dissipating heat from electronic devices mounted on circuit boards gets worse when the piece of equipment employing the circuit board is mounted within a housing. For example, fiber optic transmitter/receiver modules that include circuit boards are often environmentally sealed in a housing to prevent damage from the elements. As a result, the ability to dissipate heat from the electronic devices mounted on the circuit boards becomes challenging. The environmental housing's only mode of heat transfer to the ambient is natural convection. The transmitter/receiver module's only mode of heat transfer to the environmental housing is conduction.

[0003] A classic thermal management technique uses thermal vias to dissipate heat. The thermal vias are located in a copper pad of a printed circuit board, under the device that needs cooling. A heat sink pad of a device is soldered to the copper pad of the circuit board. During operation of the device, heat is transferred from the device's heat sink pad to the copper pad on the primary side of the circuit board. The heat is then transferred through the thermal vias to the far (secondary) side of the circuit board and to the housing of the transmitter/receiver module. The heat is then transferred by conduction from the transmitter/receiver module to the unit's environmental housing. As the component density in an electronic module increases, it becomes difficult to use classical thermal vias to dissipate heat.

SUMMARY

[0004] The above mentioned problems with meeting the thermal requirements of electronic devices mounted on circuit boards are addressed by the present invention and will be understood by reading and studying the following specification.

[0005] In one embodiment, a printed circuit board is provided. The printed circuit board includes a first heat transfer pad on a surface of the printed circuit board and an electronic device having a top surface and a bottom surface, the bottom surface includes a second heat transfer pad. The second heat transfer pad is coupled to the first heat transfer pad. The printed circuit board includes a heat sink mounting pad on the surface of the printed circuit board, the heat sink mounting pad is located adjacent to and thermally coupled to the first heat transfer pad. The printed circuit board further includes a heat sink coupled to the heat sink mounting pad, the heat sink is thermally coupled to the electronic device.

[0006] In another embodiment, an environmentally sealed housing for a fiber optic transmitter/receiver module is provided. The housing includes a printed circuit board having a primary and a secondary surface. The primary surface includes a first heat transfer pad and a heat sink mounting pad adjacent to and thermally coupled to the first heat transfer pad. The housing includes an electronic device having a top and a bottom surface. The bottom surface includes a second heat transfer pad that is coupled to the first heat transfer pad. The housing further includes a heat sink coupled to the heat sink mounting pad. The heat sink is thermally coupled to both the electronic device and the environmentally sealed housing.

[0007] In a further embodiment, a heat sink is provided. The heat sink includes a pair of substantially parallel vertical legs and a horizontal member coupled between the legs to form a “U” shape. The horizontal member includes an outer surface and an inner surface both having a layer of thermal interface material. The heat sink is surface mountable to a heat sink mounting pad on a surface of a printed circuit board. The heat sink mounting pad is adjacent and coupled to a heat transfer pad of an electronic device. The heat sink adapted to be thermally coupled to the electronic device.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0008]FIG. 1 is an illustration of one embodiment of a heat sink according to the teachings of the present invention.

[0009]FIG. 2 is an illustration of another embodiment of a heat sink according to the teachings of the present invention.

[0010]FIG. 3 is an illustration of a top and a side view of an embodiment of a heat transfer pad and heat sink mounting pad according to the teachings of the present invention.

[0011]FIG. 4 is an illustration of a top and a side view of an embodiment of a heat transfer pad and solder mask according to the teachings of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0012] In the following detailed description of the preferred embodiments, reference is made to the accompanying drawings that form a part hereof, and in which is shown by way of illustration specific embodiments in which the invention may be practiced. It is to be understood that other embodiments may be utilized and structural changes may be made without departing from the scope of the present invention.

[0013] Since the component density is so high in the new circuit board designs, it is physically impossible to directly contact the far (secondary) side of the printed circuit board with the housing of the device modules as stated in the classic technique. This invention overcomes this obstacle by providing alternate conduction/cooling paths from the electrical device to the housing.

[0014]FIG. 1 is an illustration of one embodiment of a heat sink mounted on a circuit board shown generally at 100 and constructed according to the teachings of the present invention. In this embodiment, an electronic device 110 is mounted on a printed circuit board 111. The printed circuit board 111 has a primary surface 112 and a secondary surface 114. In one embodiment, the electronic device 110 is mounted onto a heat transfer pad 150 on the surface of the printed circuit board 111. In one embodiment, electronic device 110 includes a heat sink pad or heat transfer pad 161 which couples to the heat sink pad 150 on the printed circuit board 111. The electronic device 110 is coupled to heat sink 140 via heat sinking mounting pads 154 thermally coupled to the heat sink pad 150 on the printed circuit board 111. Heat transfer pad 150 on the surface of printed circuit board 111 and heat transfer pad 161 of electronic device 110 are illustrated as being approximately the same width and length as electronic device 110. It is understood that the dimensions of heat transfer pads 150 and 161 are not limited to the dimensions of the electronic device such as 110 that couples to them. The heat transfer pads 150 and 161 may comprise one or more pads larger or smaller than the dimensions of the electronic device 110.

[0015]FIG. 3 is an illustration of one embodiment of a top view 300 and a side view 301 of a heat transfer pad 350 and a heat sink mounting pad 354-1 as discussed above. Heat transfer pad 350 and heat sink mounting pad 354-1 are on the top or primary surface 312 of printed circuit board 311. In one embodiment, heat transfer pad 350 is coupled to heat sink mounting pad 354-1 by thermally conductive leads 352. Leads 352 are for illustration and may comprise one or more leads of varying sizes. For example, in one embodiment, heat transfer pad 350 and heat sink mounting pad 354-1 are one continuous pad. In another embodiment, heat transfer pad 350 includes two heat sink mounting pads 354-1 and 354-2 having one or more interconnecting leads such as 352. FIG. 3 illustrates that the heat sink mounting pads 354 are located on opposite sides of heat transfer pad 350. It is understood by one skilled in the art that the heat sink mounting pads 354 are not restricted to the size, shape or location illustrated but may include any number of pads of any shape or location about the heat transfer pad 350.

[0016]FIG. 4 is another illustration of one embodiment of a top view 400 and a side view 401 of a heat transfer pad and heat sink mounting pad as a single pad 450 with a solder mask 429-1. Solder mask 429-1 is located on top of pad 450 separating heat transfer pad portion 459 from heat sink mounting pad portion 454-1. Heat transfer pad 450 and solder mask 429-1 are on the top or primary surface 412 of printed circuit board 411. FIG. 4 illustrates a single pad 450 for mounting an electronic device on heat transfer pad portion 459 and mounting a heat sink on heat sink mounting pad portion 454-1. As a result once soldered to pad 459 an electronic device is thermally coupled to a heat sink via single combination heat transfer pad and heat sink mounting pad 450. In an alternate embodiment, solder masks 429-1 and 429-2 are placed on pad 450 so as to form two heat sink mounting pads 454-1 and 454-2 and a single heat transfer pad 459. The use of solder masks in FIG. 4 is by way of illustration only and the method of separating the electronic device from the heat sink on a printed circuit board may include any suitable method such barriers, spacers or the like. The electronic devices, heat sinks, and other components are not limited to soldering but may be attached to the printed circuit board or heat sink pad via surface mounting, soldering using solder balls or the like, thermally and electrically conductive adhesives or other suitable materials having appropriate thermal and electrical properties. It is understood by one skilled in the art that the mounting pads discussed with respect to FIGS. 3 and 4, although shown on top of the printed circuit board, are not restricted to being located on top of the board. For example, the mounting pads may be part of the printed circuit board surface, below the printed board circuit surface or on top of another layer or surface on the printed circuit board.

[0017]FIG. 3 illustrates heat sink mounting pads 354 located on opposite sides of heat transfer pad 350 and FIG. 4 illustrates solder masks 454 for separating heat sinks mounted on opposite sides of heat transfer pad portion 459. It is understood by one skilled in the art that the heat sink mounting pads 354 and masks 454 are not restricted to the size, shape or location illustrated but may include any number of pads of any shape or location adjacent to and thermally coupled to heat transfer pads 350 and 450. It is also understood that the heat transfer pads 350 and 450 are not restricted to one single pad, in alternate embodiments, pads 350 and 450 comprise two or more smaller pads that are thermally interconnected to provide a path to draw heat from the electronic device.

[0018] Heat sink mounting pads 354 and heat transfer pad 350 and 450 are made of a thermally conductive material such as copper. For an alternate embodiment of the present invention, the pads and interconnects are formed from other suitable materials having appropriate thermal and electrical properties such as, for example, aluminum, gold, silver, or other metal. In addition, to improve the thermal conductive properties of the pads 350, 354 and 450, the pads may include a thermal insert layer such as T-PLI™, T-FORM™, CHO-THERM™, or thermally and electrically conductive adhesives or pastes or other suitable materials having appropriate thermal and electrical properties. T-PLI™ and T-FORM™ are thermal interface materials manufactured by Thermagon, Inc., 4707 Detroit St., Cleveland, Ohio 44109. CHO-THERM™ is a thermal interface material manufactured by Chomerics, a division of Parker Hannifin, 77 Dragon Court, Woburn, Mass. 01888.

[0019] In operation, an electronic device such as 110 of FIG. 1, heats up. The heat is transferred to a heat transfer pad such as 350 and to heat sink 140 via heat sink mounting pads such as 354. In another embodiment, the heat is transferred to heat sink 140 via a heat transfer pad such as 450. Heat sink 140 conducts the heat away from electronic device 110. In one embodiment, the printed circuit board 111 is mounted into a housing 130 and heat sink 140 is thermally coupled to housing 130. In this embodiment, heat sink 140 conducts the heat to housing 130 that in turn disperses the heat to the ambient air. In another embodiment, heat sink 140 straddles the electronic device 110 and is thermally coupled with the top of the electronic device 110 and draws heat from the surface of the electronic device 110. In one embodiment, heat sink 140 includes a thermally conductive interface layer 120 between the electronic device 110 and the heat sink 140. The thermal interface layer 120 consists of a thermal interface material such as T-PLI™, T-FORM™, CHO-THERM™, or the like. In another embodiment, the heat sink 140 is coupled to an outer housing 130 that includes an inner layer of a thermally conductive material 122 such as T-PLI™, T-FORM™, CHO-THERM™, or the like. In an alternate embodiment, heat sink 140 includes a layer of thermally conductive material such as T-PLI™, T-FORM™, CHO-THERM™, or the like.

[0020] In one embodiment, printed circuit board 111 is part of a fiber optic transmitter/receiver module within housing 130. In another embodiment, the fiber optic transmitter/receiver module is environmentally sealed within a second housing 155. In one embodiment, the transmitter/receiver module housing 130 is thermally coupled to environmentally sealed housing 155. In another embodiment, environmentally sealed housing 155 includes an inner layer of a thermally conductive material between the transmitter/receiver module housing 130 and the environmentally sealed housing 155. The thermally conductive material comprises a material such as T-PLI™, T-FORM™, CHO-THERM™, or the like.

[0021]FIG. 2 is an illustration of another embodiment of a heat sink mounted on a circuit board, shown generally at 200, and constructed according to the teachings of the present invention. A circuit board 211 has a primary surface 212 and a secondary surface 214. In this embodiment, an electronic device 210 is mounted to the primary surface 212 of circuit board 211. In one embodiment, electronic device 210 includes a heat transfer pad 261 coupled to the bottom of electronic device 210. The heat transfer pad 261 draws heat from the electronic device 210. In one embodiment, electronic device 210 is mounted to a heat transfer pad 250 that is on the primary surface 212 of the circuit board 211 and aids in drawing heat from electronic device 210. A component 260 is mounted to the secondary surface 214 of circuit board 211. Component 260 may be an electronic device, an enclosure for an electronic device, a spacer or any other component mounted on the printed circuit board. A heat sink 240 is coupled to the secondary surface 214 of circuit board 211. In one embodiment, circuit board 211 includes thermal vias 280 which are formed through circuit board 211 and aid in conducting heat from electronic device 210 on the primary side 212 through the printed circuit 211 to heat sink 240 on the secondary side 214. Electronic device 210 on the primary side is thermally coupled to heat sink 240 on the secondary side by vias 280. Although only two vias 280 are illustrated with respect to FIG. 2, it is understood that any number of vias as appropriate may be utilized to aid in conducting heat from electronic devices such as 210 mounted on the circuit board 211. In one embodiment, heat sink 240 includes thermally conductive heat sink mounting pads 264 that aid in conducting heat from electronic device 210 through vias 280.

[0022] A thermal via is a thermally conductive conduit through which heat is conducted. In one embodiment, thermal vias 280 are formed by drilling holes through printed circuit board 211 and filling the hole with a thermally conductive material such as copper. In alternate embodiments, thermal vias 280 are formed by drilling, routing, punching holes or slots, or the like in the printed circuit board 211 and filling with an appropriate thermally conductive material.

[0023] In operation, electronic component 210 heats up, this heat is transferred to heat sink 240 by thermal vias 280. In one embodiment, the heat is transferred to a heat sink pad such as 350 or 450 of FIGS. 3 and 4, respectively, and then transferred to heat sink 240 by thermal vias 280. In one embodiment, printed circuit board 211 is enclosed in a housing 230 and heat sink 240 is thermally coupled to housing 230. The heat is conducted from heat sink 240 to enclosure 230 for dispersion to the ambient air. In an alternate embodiment, enclosure 230 includes a layer of thermally conductive material 220, such as T-PLI™, T-FORM™, CHO-THERM™, that is thermally coupled to heat sink 240 and aids in the conduction of heat from the heat sink 240 to the housing 230.

[0024] In one embodiment, printed circuit board 211 is part of a fiber optic transmitter/receiver module within housing 230. In another embodiment, the fiber optic transmitter/receiver module is environmentally sealed within a second housing 255. In one embodiment, the transmitter/receiver module housing 230 is thermally coupled to environmentally sealed housing 255. In another embodiment, environmentally sealed housing 255 includes an inner layer of a thermally conductive material between the transmitter/receiver module housing 230 and the environmentally sealed housing 255. The thermally conductive material comprises a material such as T-PLI™, T-FORM™, CHO-THERM™, or the like.

[0025] In another embodiment, both the heat sink 140 described with respect to FIG. 1 and the heat sink 240 described with respect to FIG. 2 are employed on one circuit board to draw heat from electronic devices. Heat sinks 140 and 240 may be employed in any combination for one or more electronic components. It is understood that components such as electronic device 110 and 210, heat sink 140 and 240, component 260 may be coupled to the printed circuit in a number of ways to include surface mounting, soldering using solder balls or the like, thermally and electrically conductive adhesives or any other suitable materials having appropriate thermal and electrical properties.

[0026] In one embodiment, the heat sinks described are made of a thermally conductive material such as copper. For an alternate embodiment of the present invention, the heat sinks are formed from other suitable materials having appropriate thermal and electrical properties such as, for example, aluminum, gold, silver, or other metal.

[0027] The electronic devices, heat sinks, and other components mounted on the circuit board are not limited to soldering but may be attached to the printed circuit board or heat sink pads via surface mounting, soldering using solder balls or the like, thermally and electrically conductive adhesives or other suitable materials having appropriate thermal and electrical properties.

CONCLUSION

[0028] Although specific embodiments have been illustrated and described herein, it will be appreciated by those of ordinary skill in the art that any arrangement that is calculated to achieve the same purpose may be substituted for the specific embodiment shown. This application is intended to cover any adaptations or variations of the present invention. For example, the heat sink in one embodiment is a “U” shape and straddles the electronic device. In further embodiments, the heat sink is “L” shaped and is thermally coupled to the top of the electronic device from one side. In other embodiments, the heat sink has four legs and straddles the electronic device. Each of the legs thermally couples to the electronic device. It is understood that the heat sink can be one of a variety of shapes that thermally couple to one or more electronic devices. In addition, in one embodiment the heat sink is employed in a fiber optic transmitter/receiver module that is environmentally sealed in a housing in other embodiments, the heat sink is employed in housings that are not environmentally sealed and in applications other than fiber optic transmitter/receiver modules. Further, in one embodiment the heat sink aids in drawing heat away from an electronic device, in other embodiments, the heat sink aids in drawing heat away from one or more electronic devices. For example, a heat sink is thermally coupled to one or more electronic devices, heat transfer pads and/or thermal vias or any combination of electronic devices, heat transfer pads and thermal vias to aid in drawing heat away from one or more electronic devices.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
DE102008019797A1 *Apr 18, 2008Oct 22, 2009Sew-Eurodrive Gmbh & Co. KgCooling arrangement for electrical appliance i.e. converter, has metal holder comprising end region solder-connected with sub-region of copper surface and another end region connected with cooling body in heat conducting manner
Classifications
U.S. Classification361/704
International ClassificationH05K1/02, H05K7/20, H05K3/34
Cooperative ClassificationH05K2201/099, H05K1/0209, H05K2201/066, H05K2201/09781, H05K3/341, H05K3/3452, H05K7/20445, H05K1/0206, H05K2201/09909
European ClassificationH05K1/02B2E, H05K1/02B2B2, H05K7/20F4B
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