Low Weight Magnesium HiK™ Plates

Optimization by Innovation

HiK™ aluminum plates are one of the premiere heat spreaders for military and commercial electronics applications. Embedding heat pipes into traditional aluminum heat sink and spreader plates can increase the conductivity by up to six times without dramatically increasing weight or reducing structural stability. For applications needing further weight reductions ACT has introduced Magnesium HiK™ Plates. Magnesium has a density of 1.74 g/cm3 which is 65% the density of aluminum. Magnesium is not often used as a heat spreader due to its low thermal conductivity; yet this limitation can be eliminated by embedding heat pipes. Mg HiK™ plates offer thermal and weight benefits over traditional aluminum designs. Aggressive weight targets in military systems, especially transport vehicles and UAVs, require ACT’s Mg HiK™ plates which provide improved thermal performance in a lightweight package.

Thermal conductivities of Mg HiK™ plates range from 450 – 800 W/m-K.

Low Weight Magnesium High Conductivity PlatesCase Study

ACT built and tested three different thermal spreaders to compare and contrast the performance of the various technologies. The spreader plates were designed for real world high power electronics board with multiple heat loads and constant temperature cooling rails. The three solutions tested were an Aluminum 6061 plate, an Aluminum HiK™ plate, and a Magnesium HiK™ plate all were tested with identical geometries and boundary conditions. A comparison of the test results for the three solutions is summarized below.

Aluminum 6061 4.10 lb 180 91
Material Weight (% Al) k (W/m-K) Max Temp (°C)
 Aluminum HiK™ 124% 700 61
 Magnesium HiK™  98%  575  67

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