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Separable Near-Isothermal Refreshable Interface for Electronics Modules

Award Information

Department of Defense
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2013 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Physical Optics Corporation
Electro-Optics Systems Division 1845 West 205th Street Torrance, CA -
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2013
Title: Separable Near-Isothermal Refreshable Interface for Electronics Modules
Agency: DOD
Contract: FA9453-13-M-0076
Award Amount: $149,231.00


ABSTRACT: To address the AFRL"s need for a low-thermal resistance thermal/mechanical interface for electronics modules inserted into a card carrier, Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new Separable near-Isothermal Refreshable Interface (SIRI) for electronics modules. The innovation in enhanced surface morphology, and integration of ultrahigh-conductivity materials will enable the system to provide a near-isothermal mechanical interface, even with repeated insertions. As a result, this process offers a separable thermal mechanical interface (STMI) with customizable specific thermal resistance ranging down to<0.1 deg C-in./W (in thermal vacuum), and ease of implementation with virtually no change to hardware. Local variations in specific thermal resistance are much less than +/-25%. The STMI is robust, shows consistent performance over typical qualification-level vibration and thermal cycle exposures, is compatible with the space environment, and conforms to space qualification requirements including high vacuum, microgravity, radiation, atomic oxygen, and low outgassing. These attributes directly address the AFRL requirements for a new STMI for spaceborne applications. In Phase I, POC will demonstrate the feasibility of SIRI by validating the improved thermal performance of the refreshable interface. In Phase II, POC plans to develop a prototype to show improvements attainable using SIRI technology. BENEFIT: Upon successful completion of this project, a new capability for near-isothermal bondlines that can be applied in many assemblies will be available. In addition, a new modular flexible application paradigm will be demonstrated for customizing STMIs with increased mating surface area contact characteristics and controlled thermal conductivity. The overall result will be three-fold: a low thermal resistance bondline, a new flexible manufacturing paradigm to produce low thermal resistivity bonds in a variety of applications, and novel bond preparation processes to produce customized bond-specific thermal resistivity from<0.1 deg C-in./W arbitrarily higher. These results will be applicable in Air Force, other DoD, and commercial areas. Commercial applications of high-power and high-speed electronics are in need of the thermal management that SIRI provides. In commercial applications, SIRI can be applied to manufacturing lines, as well as in depot-level repairs of electronics such as supercomputers and dedicated accelerator boards used in fields such as sound recording and animation. These commercial applications will be investigated during the course of the project. Potential customers include high-end audio and video equipment suppliers as well as general-purpose computing suppliers.

Principal Investigator:

Kang Lee
Principal Scientist
(310) 320-3088

Business Contact:

Gordon Drew
Chief Financial Officer
(310) 320-3088
Small Business Information at Submission:

Physical Optics Corporation
Products and Engineering Division 1845 West 205th Street Torrance, CA -

EIN/Tax ID: 330118051
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: Yes
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No