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Heatsink questions.

Discussion in 'Electronic Basics' started by The little lost angel, Dec 15, 2003.

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  1. The specifications for some parts lists the heatsink required as a
    figure like say 100 x 100 x 2.5mm

    Others differentiate between chassis and finned but doesn't give a

    Am I correct in thinking, based on the 2nd type of specifications,
    that a heatsink of say 50 x 50 x 2.5 mm with fins on it that make up
    another 50 x 50 x 2.5 mm of mass would do just as good as a flat piece
    of 100 x 100 x 2.5mm?


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  2. What you need to consider is both the mass and the surface area. The fins in
    a heatsink enable a large surface area to be contained in a small space,
    thus greatly increasing its thermal dissipation. The larger the surface area
    the better the dissipation. This means that two heatsinks of equal mass may
    have significantly different thermal dissipation characteristics depending
    on their shape and total surface area (i.e., a finned heatsink should be
    better than a flat piece of the same mass).

    BTW, your numbers above are not right: The flat piece has twice the mass of
    the finned heatsink - unless that's what you meant to say.

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