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Thermal conductivity with plating

  1. Oct 13, 2010 #1
    This relates to design of a heat spreader. My intuition is failing me and I'm not familiar with this area of thermodynamics/heat flow.

    Assume I have a heat source, attached to a large flat surface used as a heat spreader/sink. The size of the source is negligible w.r.t. the surface area (A) of the heat spreader. Consider that the heat spreader is made from a material with thermal conductivity X. Now consider an alternative where the heat spreader has a thin coating (metal plating) with heat conductivity Y on top of the material with conductivity X. How does the effective thermal conductivity from the heat source to the ambient air change in the X and Y vs. the X only case?

    I'm probably missing information, but I'm not sure what's relevant here. Let me know if anything else is relevant in coming up with at least a first order approximation of how the heat flow changes.

    Thanks,

    Chris
     
  2. jcsd
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