Compounders and resin suppliers are offering more and more options for metal replacement in electronic applications. Cool Polymers has developed a compounding process that improves thermal conductivity in polymers through the use of specially formulated carbon and ceramic reinforcements. Polymer types that can be compounded include polyolefins, PC and PC blends, polyamides, polyphthalamides, polyurethanes, polysulfones, and liquid crystal polymers (LCPs).
Compared to metal parts, the composites, trade-named CoolPoly, reportedly offer a 40 percent weight reduction over aluminum, molded-in functionality and parts consolidation, elimination of postmachining and assembly operations, and comparable heat transfer properties. An LCP compound replaced metal in the adjacent photo of overmolded heat pipes.
The compounds can also replace nonthermally conductive plastics currently used in heat-sensitive applications, offering 100 to 500 times greater conductivity?up to 100W/mK, according to the manufacturer. Cool Polymers has targeted the medical, optical, mechanical, and microelectronics markets for the compounds, which cost $5 to $30/lb.
Cool Polymers Inc.
Phone: (888) 811-3787
Fax: (401) 732-7916