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Accessory - Thermal Interface Material

TITLE Thermal Interface Material Picture
Thermal Interface
thermal interface with heatsink

Thermal interface materials fill in any gaps and imperfections in the heat sink base and heat source. This minimizes the interface thermal resistance. Alpha offers several thermal interface materials in various sizes. Material choice will depend on attachment method, contact area size, flatness, attachment pressure, and desired thermal performance.


1. Phase Change Material Specification

These materials begin to soften and flow at an elevated temperature, filling the microscopic imperfections between the heat sink and heat source, reducing the thermal interface resistance. Pull-tab is optional.

and datasheet
Color Operating Temperature (degC) Thermal Impedance (degC-in2/W) Thickness Thermal Conductivity Specific Gravity
T-PCM905C T-PCM905C Picture Laird Technologies
#Tpcm 905C
Yellow -25 to +125 0.048 (@10psi) 0.127(mm)
0.7 W/mK 1.3
Model Name:
pdf img

T-PCM905C-EB (Eighth Brick)
T-PCM905C-QB (Quarter Brick)
T-PCM905C-HB (Half Brick)

TPCM585 TPCM585 Picture Laird Technologies
#Tpcm 585

Gray -40 to +125 0.020 (@10psi) 0.127(mm)
3.8 W/mK 2.87
Model Name:
Storage and Handling Instruction
2. Gap Filling Material Specification

These materials are soft and compliant, allowing them to fill any large gaps between the heat sink and heat source. Gap fillers can also be used when a single heat sink is cooling multiple heat sources.

and datasheet
Color Operating Temperature (degC) Thermal Impedance (degC-in2/W) Thickness Thermal Conductivity Specific Gravity
T-PLI210 T-PLI210 Picture Laird Technologies
#Tpli 210A1FG

Rose -45 to +200 0.25 (@30psi) 0.25(mm) [.010"] 6 W/mK 1.44
Model Name:
pdf img

T-PLI210-EB (Eighth Brick)
T-PLI210-QB (Quarter Brick)
T-PLI210-HB (Half Brick)

T-PLI220 T-PLI220 Picture Laird Technologies
#Tpli 220A1
Blue -45 to +200 0.24 (@30psi) 0.51(mm) [.020"] 6 W/mK 1.43
Model Name:
T-FLEX640 T-FLEX640 Picture Laird Technologies
#TFlex 640
Blue-Violet -45 to +200 0.62 (@10psi) 1.02(mm) [.040"] 3 W/mK 1.34
Model Name:
3. Thermal Grease Specification

Thermally conductive grease offers low thermal resistance, and is far less sensitive to mounting pressure than other thermal interface materials.

Manufacturer and datasheet Color Operating Temperature (degC) Thermal Conductivity Specific Gravity Weight
YG6260-5 YG6260 Picture Momentive
White -50 to +150 0.84 W/mK 2.5 5 g
G751-1 G751 Picture Shin-Etsu Chemical
Gray -50 to +120 4.5 W/mK 2.5 1 g
4. Thermal Performance and Comparison Data

There are many types of thermal interface materials available in the market. Although each vendor publishes its own product test data, the results depend on the test methods and environment. These factors can be very different from real world operating conditions, making it difficult to compare TIMs accurately. In light of this, we tested the performance of the TIMs we offer in our own thermal lab. These results offer a good reference for comparison purposes.

TIMs Comparison Data Details

5. Pull-tab Liner Option for Phase Change Material
pulltab example

Alpha has standardized the Pull-Tab liner option for phase change materials (PCMs), T-PCM905C and T-PCM585. If a pre-applied PCM is specified on a heat sink that is 70x70mm or smaller, a pull-tab liner can be added. After selecting T-PCM905C or T-PCM585 as part of a heatsink assembly, the "Add Pull-tab" option will allow the addition of the Pull-Tab liner at a minimum cost increase.

pull tab

Advantage of pull-tab liner
The Pull-Tab makes removal of the protective liner simpler and quicker, reducing the possibility of the interface material being damaged during the liner removal process. The extended Pull-Tab will also overhang the edge of the heat sink, acting as a visual cue. If the liner is left on by the operator, the pull tab will act as an alert that rework is required before the system can be powered up. With a standard liner, there would be no visual cue if the liner is left on by mistake.

Adhesive Tape

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