CANONSBURG, PA – Ansys Inc. has released Version 4.3 of its Icepak electronics cooling design software. Direct representation of CAD geometries expands the ability of Icepak software to handle complex geometry, reportedly providing additional flexibility and a higher degree of automation while modeling complex shapes. Icepak 4.3 also has direct import of trace and via details from MCM/BRD and Gerber files of PCB layout, along with a new method to accurately represent these details.
The automatic hex-dominant mesher can be used to mesh CAD geometries quickly and efficiently. It is said to be a robust and highly automated unstructured mesh generator that can handle grids of virtually unlimited size and complexity, consisting mostly of hexahedral elements but including triangular, tetrahedral or pyramidal cells. In addition, Icepak 4.3 comes with enhanced libraries including thermo-electric cooler modules and new materials, modeling of temperature-dependent powers, enhanced macros and improved correlations for automatic specification of heat transfer coefficients.
CHANDLER, AZ – Isola Group, S.a.r.l. reported that IS620, low loss high-speed space product, is now available with enhanced electrical attributes and improved thermal performance. IS620 reportedly offers 25% lower dielectric loss and much improved thermal performance. The dielectric loss numbers at 10 GHz using the stripline test method would now be in the 0.007 range and with the split post method in the 0.005 range.
Successful simulated assembly testing was carried out using Isola’s seven zone reflow oven on numerous designs with multiple excursions up to peak temps ranging from 230º C to 290º C.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – Blue Ridge Numerics has released a new version of its CFdesign electronics cooling software that reportedly enables users to set up and view a first-pass airflow and heat transfer simulation in minutes while generating high-fidelity design reviews faster than with previous versions.
CFdesign V9 is CAD-driven electronics cooling and thermal management simulation. The CAD model drives the simulation the same way a physical prototype drives a lab test.
The revised automation process is based on two new features: auto mesh sizing and rules on parts. The auto mesh sizing performs a comprehensive topological interrogation of the geometric model, assigning mesh sizes based on curvature, geometric gradients and proximity to neighboring features.
"This was the last aspect of our software that required some guru-like CFD expertise," says Ed Williams, president of Blue Ridge Numerics. "With auto mesh sizing, that headache has left the building."
According to the company, CFdesign V9 beta customers report that the mesh is cleaner and smoother, critical transition regions are instantly and expertly managed, and the ultimate CFD solution is achieved faster than before.
The new rules on parts feature in the software intelligently detects MCAD part names within an assembly and automatically assigns volumetric boundary conditions and material properties. Boundary conditions include heat generation and total heat generation, both of which can be steady state, transient or temperature dependent.
PITTSFIELD, MA – GE Plastics has introduced a family of amorphous thermoplastic polyimides named Extem. Some of these polymers retain their stiffness at continuous use temperatures as high as 230ºC, according to Rob Costella, the company’s global product manager for high performance polymers. Extem’s closest product, GE’s Ultem polyetherimide, has continuous use temperatures that top out at about 180ºC. Compared to Ultem and other types of amorphous thermoplastics, Extem is said to exhibit improved resistance to chemicals – including normally troublesome chlorinated solvents and basic environments.
According to a news release, Extem promises flame resistance without the use of halogenated stabilizers. Flammability testing is still taking place, but Costella predicts Extem will offer very similar UL94 performance to Ultem, which is well known for its ability to withstand fire.
The reported temperature performance, chemical resistance and efficient melt processability of Extem makes it a candidate for a variety applications that currently use semi-crystalline polymers, thermoset polyimides or other “imidized” materials such as polyamidimide. These include electrical parts such as connectors or even flexible circuits. Extem is compatible with lead-free soldering, Costella noted. Other likely applications include under-hood automotive parts, bearings and gears, semiconductor wafer handlers and components for down-hole oil and gas drilling.
SYDNEY, Australia – Altium Ltd. has released Altium Designer 6.6, which is said to include new features and enhancements aimed at unifying design flows beyond the development of the electronic circuitry in order to achieve greater end-to-end product development efficiency. In particular, it addresses the challenges of linking electronics design to mechanical design and product manufacture. "Advances in technology are forcing the convergence of hardware, software and programmable hardware, and design systems must become unified at all levels to support this," said Nick Martin, founder and CEO, Altium Ltd. "Getting electronic products to market within an acceptable time frame requires not only effective collaboration between the electronics designers themselves, but also between electronics design and the rest of the stakeholders in the process. This is particularly important with mechanical design and manufacturing, where good data interchange can lead to significant time savings.”
Designer 6.6 expands the recently introduced STEP support (The ISO 10303 Standard for the Exchange of Product Model Data) to include direct import of 3D component data, helping designers access and share precise mechanical data to enhance the flow of information throughout the wider development lifecycle. Customers can now import 3D STEP models into PCB library files and associate them with components.
The software also features a new IPC footprint wizard, new adjustable rounded rectangular pad shapes, improved variant support, an improved drill drawing symbol table, an improved bill of material (BOM) report and a new signal integrity example.
CARSON CITY, NV – Taiyo America Inc. has released LDI-1000 GA, a new laser direct imageable solder mask. It is said to be a high productivity solder mask designed specifically for LDI applications and requiring only 80 mJ/cm2 of exposure energy. It resolves fine features in coatings up to 65 microns in thickness.
LDI-1000 GA is reported to have excellent heat resistance, and is compatible with lead-free assembly. It also is RoHS compliant, meets industry standards for low halogen and is compatible with final finishes including electroless nickel/immersion gold, silver and tin.
“LDI-1000 GA is a state of the art product for the most demanding designs that require laser direct imaging. It utilizes conventional solder mask equipment for coating and processing after laser exposure to minimize modifications to the conventional solder mask process in the shop,” says Jody Williams, New Product Development manager for Taiyo America.