Thermal simulation package boosts EDA connectivity for advanced thermal management

May 27, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Mentor Graphics’ latest version of its FloTHERM XT software adds to its advanced thermal management capabilities for electronic systems, printed circuit board (PCB) and packages of any geometric complexity. An integrated mechanical design automation (MDA) and electronic design automation (EDA) electronics cooling solution, the FloTHERM XT product has CAD-centric technology and a robust mesher which accurately simulates complex geometries.

FloTHERM XT now supports transient analysis, Joule heating, parametric studies, extended EDA integration capabilities, and new modelling options, including an ability to represent copper in detail for complex PCBs.

For thermal specialists and design engineers, FloTHERM XT provides early design virtual prototyping and advanced “what-if” analysis for improved product quality, minimised design iterations, and faster time to market. New key product capabilities include:

• Transient Analysis: time-varying analyses across all industrial applications is enabled with the FloTHERM XT solver and intuitive user interface (UI).

• Component and Board Manipulation: time is saved by importing any board and component layout and easily modifying data for position, size, orientation, shape and modelling level prior to transfer to FloTHERM XT.

• Joule Heating: comprehensive analysis platform predicts current density, electric potential, and associated Joule heating effects in complex electronics systems, PCBs and other high-power devices – a valuable feature for automotive and power electronics applications.

• Parametric Study: a new integrated environment for defining, solving and analysing results for parametric variations of geometry, attributes (e.g. material, thermal) plus solution parameters enhances the design optimisation process.

• EDA Tool Connectivity: a new ODB++ interface for non-Mentor Graphics layout tools supports Cadence, Zuken and Altium and helps users save time by providing increased user flexibility and use of existing EDA data.

• New Modelling Options: PCB copper nets and traces are represented in full 3D detail, critical for higher-fidelity solutions or high-power applications using Joule heating effects for critical devices on a board.

• Enhanced user interface.

User William Maltz, president and founder, Electronic Cooling Solutions Inc. provides an endorsement; “We can now take raw mechanical and electrical design data for an electronics system through to a viable thermal model appropriate for advanced parametric analysis. The improvements offered by FloTHERM XT enable us to work more efficiently and to build and run models with a significant reduction of engineering time and effort.”

Mentor Graphics; www.mentor.com/products/mechanical/flotherm/flotherm-xt/