Heat Spreader

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What Does Heat Spreader Mean?

A heat spreader refers to an object that has high thermal conductivity and that is used as a bridge between a heat source and a heat exchanger. It is meant to fully utilize a secondary heat exchanger where the geometry of two surfaces is not the same or fully compatible. A heat spreader can be as simple as a thin copper plate.

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Techopedia Explains Heat Spreader

A heat spreader essentially “spreads out” the heat from its source, making it possible to sink heat by distributing it to the next level (usually called a heat exchanger). It has high thermal conductivity and heat capacity. A heat spreader is usually needed in an electronic system where the heat source has a high flux density and the heat cannot directly sink to the secondary heat exchanger; efficiency must thus be added to the system, such as those that are air-cooled, which have a lower heat transfer coefficient than liquid-cooled ones. A heat spreader is used in electronic devices with powerful processing units and electrical or mechanical components.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.