Thermal filler increases polymer conductivity by 25%

Finnish materials company Carbodeon has developed a new thermal filler that is said to increase the conductivity of thermally conductive polymers by 25%.

The breakthrough is expected to provide significant performance increases for polymers used in electronics and LED manufacture.

Starting with a polyamide 66 (PA66) reference material, the company created a new material using 44.9% boron nitride and 0.1% of its uDiamond nanodiamond powder.

Tests showed that the thermal conductivity of the PA66 increased by 25% on average.

Carbodeon claims the increase is achieved without affecting the electrical insulation or other mechanical properties of the material, making it an ideal choice for a wide range of electronics and LED applications.

Company cto Vesa Myllymäki said: "The performance improvements achieved by this filler are derived from the extremely high thermal conductivity of diamond, at around 2000W/mK.

"The key development made by Carbodeon is to tune the surface chemistry of the diamond particles and mixing process to develop a nanocomposite in which the diamond is very well interfaced to the polymer molecules."

Author
Laura Hopperton

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So what does that bring the thermal conductivity too?

Comment Interested, 12/12/2013
For fillers to increase the thermal conductivity of any polymer, via thier own intrinsic conductivity, would require an intimate contact of the polymer chains and transition through the filler, a process akin to the tensile strength increase using fibres. However I would think that the increase comes from the fillers being effecive nodes that can be forced into vibration by the surrounding polymer and hence include more of the polymer in the vibrational system to increase the energy dissipation. It is well known that polymers with large MW pendant fractions are better at transmitting this energy through their structure than those without. Maybe the authors have just found natures "sweet spot" with the size and dispersion these polymeric fillers, afterall a diamond is a polymer.

Comment Craig Watkinson, 12/12/2013
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