Thermal interface materials would be the best thing for the water cooling process. If you are looking for some pro-level tips and tricks then this article would help you a lot. In this article, I am going to tell you about what is thermal interface material, why it’s important, and how it’s made.
Once upon a time, there was no technology to keep electronic components cool by water or air. Then some scientists started their work on this part of the cooling system. They found out that one of the best ways to keep your devices cool was alloying metal which will be part of the heat exchanger.
Here comes the term TIM which is thermal interface material. It’s a material that provides the proper surface for heat transfer between two surfaces. If you are looking for the best performance then you must use copper, aluminum, or diamond-based TIMs because they have a great conductivity rating. Obviously, you can also cool water by using this product.
In the beginning, the thermal interface material was just metal in paste form. Then people started making these materials in powder form and in a foil shape to avoid oxidation problems.
Thermal Interface Materials Manufacturers:
Nowadays TIMs are not made in a laboratory by a small business but there are companies who produce them for commercial use. They get this product manufactured in the same way like you get your food in fast-food restaurants. Do you know what I am talking about? Yeah, these companies start making it in bulk quantity and distribute it to worldwide markets.
Thermal Interface Materials Uses:
- There are many uses of thermal interface material; some common uses are listed below. I hope you would get a better idea of this term after reading these uses.
- Heat transfer from CPU, GPU and Chipset to your cooling block or water block
- Improves thermal performance between CPU/GPU and heatsink by filling the gap that is created because of poor surface contact
- In some cases, it can be used for heat rejection from high-power electrical components and semi-conductor devices
- Increases thermal conductivity of electronic devices and reduces operating temperature
Now that you got an idea about what is thermal interface material, let’s see what to do if it’s not working properly. What should you do when TIM starts to break down? Well, the best option would be changing your thermal paste for a new one. There are many companies that produce thermal interface material for commercial use so which brand you should choose? I’ll tell you later in this article.
When to change your TIM:
You need to check for the breakdown between your device and cooling surface every 6 months or daily because where there is smoke; there will be a fire (Breakdown of material = Overheating or Breakdown of the cooling block).
As I told you earlier that there are many companies that produce thermal interface material for commercial use; some great examples of these companies are Arctic Silver, Prolimatech, Cooler Master, and Thermal Grizzly. But don’t get confused like me.
Which one you should buy?
I was confused between Arctic Silver 5 Vs MX-2 because both are great products for your motherboard. I asked people about their experience and some said that they used Arctic Silver while others recommended me to use Thermal Grizzly Conductonaut. You can also check out this article where you’ll get all the information about thermal interface materials’ comparison.
How does thermal interface material work?
As I’ve mentioned earlier that TIM is made of metal. These metals have a low thermal conductivity rating which does not allow heat to pass through them easily. It basically reduces the thickness of your heatsink but does not provide a cooling surface area for the device.
By using this product, one can improve the effectiveness of the thermal conductivity level or density of thermal conductivity of a device.
This step-by-step pro-level guide is summed up in an article. In this article, you will learn about the best uses of thermal interface materials to cool water. Different types of thermal interface materials are also explained. You were guided about which thermal interface materials you should buy. You are also guided about how does thermal interface material works. Some of the best manufacturers of thermal interface materials are also introduced.
You must keep in mind that you should not use thermal interface material with TDP more than what your device requires. This is because: if you’ll use this paste over and above the required TDP then it will be difficult for the cooling block to transfer heat. However, when you are using TIM within its working range then this product works significantly better in comparison with aluminum heatsink.
However, you should read this article from the start to finish to have a piece of complete knowledge of the topic.