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Industry’s First Reflowable Thermal Protection Device Replaces Power FETs

Industry-First Reflowable Thermal Protection Device

Introducing a breakthrough technology that allows manufacturers to include surface-mountable thermal protection in their standard RoHS-compliant reflow assembly process.  Manufacturers can realize significant savings by moving from hand assembly to cost-efficient surface-mount device (SMD) processes.  The reflowable thermal protection (RTP) device can be quickly and easily installed using industry-standard pick-and-place and Pb-free reflow equipment.  The RTP device is unique in that it can withstand multiple reflow passes with peak temperatures exceeding well over 200°C and yet, in the field, will open when it detects temperatures above 200°C.

The first device being introduced in the RTP product family, this device helps meet some of the most stringent AECQ-based specification requirements for automotive electronics.  The RTP device can be used to replace redundant power FETs, relays, and heavy heat sinks typically used in automotive designs, while also offering a robust solution for IT server, telecom power supply, and other industrial applications.  The RTP device helps protect against thermal-runaway damage caused by capacitors, ICs, resistors and other power components that can crack and fail, or from the effects of any type of corrosion-induced heating.

The RTP device features a low 1.2mOhm (typical) series resistance, as well as high-current DC-interrupt ratings of 200A at 16VDC and 100A at 32VDC.  This thermal protection device is used to help meet the reliability requirements of automotive power electronics systems, including ABS, cooling fan and power steering applications.  The RTP device’s 200°C open temperature helps prevent false activations, and improves system reliability since it is a value above the normal operating window of most normally functioning electronics, but below the melt-point of typical lead-free solders.  As a result, the RTP device will not open if surrounding components are operating in their target temperature range, but it will open before a component de-solders and creates the potential risk of additional short circuits.

To allow it to open at 200°C in the field, the RTP device utilizes a one-time electronic activation process to become thermally sensitive.  Before activation, it can withstand three Pb-free solder reflow steps without opening.  Electronic activation timing is user-determined, and can be implemented to occur automatically at system power up, or during system testing.

The device’s thermal sensitivity is beneficial since, in some cases, failed power components may not generate a dead short circuit overcurrent condition, but instead may create a resistive short that cannot be opened by a traditional fuse.  This type of event may actually reduce load current, but can still result in unsafe thermal runaway conditions.  The RTP device helps prevent damage caused by both dead short circuit and resistive short circuit conditions.

The RTP device is resistant to shock, vibration, temperature cycling and humidity exposure.  It is also tested to meet or exceed some of the strictest automotive AECQ environmental and life testing requirements.  To simplify installation, improve system reliability, and optimize thermal coupling with the PCB, the reflowable RTP device can be installed using standard SMD processes, and does not require any special tooling or manual installation.  It also helps conserve valuable board space in a cost-effective design.

The Pb-free RTP200 device is also halogen-free, RoHS compliant and allows for conformal coating.

To build upon this new, scalable technology, further product extensions, including a 0.6mOhm RTP device, will continue to enhance the product offering of circuit protection solutions.

For more information on Tyco Electronics solutions, please send an email to MyFeedback@dee-inc.com.  DEE is a Trusted Supplier and Expert in providing Cost Savings, Fast Multiple Solution Options, Supplier Reduction, and Time Savings.  We Help Manufacturers Find Solutions and Exceed Their Goals.™

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