While metals are often chosen for their high thermal conductivity, many applications do not require this high level of thermal transfer. In fact, air movement (or convection) more often determines how effectively a system dissipates heat.
For many designs, heat sinks made of thermally conductive compounds and processed via injection molding offer greater design flexibility. This allows designers to maximize convection delivering better thermal performance while minimizing manufacturing costs.
Typically, thermally conductive compounds provide a 50% weight reduction over comparable aluminum heat sinks, especially significant in energy conscious transportation uses. Selecting the proper base resin also provides chemical resistance, eliminating corrosion that can lead to failure of metal heat sinks.
RTP Company compounds thermally conductive additives into a wide variety of plastic resins to produce compounds optimized for thermal management in a wide range of operating temperatures and environments.