6 Replies Latest reply on Dec 1, 2016 9:12 PM by McCool

    heat sink


      Do I need additional thermal compound for the heatsink? Or is the silver stuff enough?

        • 1. Re: heat sink
          Intel Corporation
          This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

          Hello bubbley:
          In regard to your inquiry, I just wanted to let you know that the thermal paste that came with the heatsink fan is enough for the processor to work properly, it has 3 stripes of thermal paste, so there is no need to add more of it.
          Any questions, please let me know.

          • 2. Re: heat sink
            Intel Corporation
            This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

            Hi bubbley,

            Thank you for your interest in the Intel® Joule Platform.

            The heat sink provided with the development platform is enough, you don’t need any extra thermal compound, however, if your project requires high processing, as an alternative you can install a fan to cool the Intel Joule, the expansion board has a fan header under the board to connect it, we recommend the Sunon* fan, Model# MC30100V2-000U-A99 available from Digikey. Also, please take a look at the Intel Joule Module User Guide for more details.

            Hope this information helps, if you have any questions, please let us know.


            • 3. Re: heat sink

              A couple of comments on this:

              - There was no thermal paste in my kit.   I'm wondering if some kits have it and some don't. 

              - I would recommend using some thermal tape.   It does not hurt, and makes it easier to remove, and is not as messy as thermal paste.

              ASIDE: I found the heat sink "fuses" to the Joule if you mount it without thermal tape or paste and it's impossible to get off again. 

              - The "recommended" Sunon fan is 30mm x 30mm; this is too large to mount to the heatsink, so you would have to add a mounting plate.

              - Instead of the Sunon fan, I personally recommend getting a smaller 5V fan the same size as the heatsink, and then use two bolts jammed between fins on the fan as shown in the picture below.

              - This fan is perfectly capable of keeping the Joule cool enough to run continuously at 2.4GHz in my experience, even when running a heavy workload.


              2016-09-12 17.19.11.jpg

              - The connector is a JST ZHR-3, and you can connect it using a 1mm crimp tool as show in the picture below.   Red is positive.   Make sure the fan blows INTO the heatsink (there is typically a small arrow on the side of the fan showing airflow direction).   Note: power for the fan will cut a bit into your power margin for USB.   The 5V regulator provides 900mA, and the fan takes about 100mA of that.


              2016-09-12 17.12.15.jpg

              2016-09-12 17.19.56.jpg

              • 4. Re: heat sink

                Another way to mount a fan to the Joule is to use a fan-mount plate.   For instance, I happened to have some 60mm x 60mm E232190 fans left over from another project (it's actually much larger than necessary) so I laser-cut a plate to mount it.   This also makes a nice "case" to project the Joule.   You also need some M2 standoffs.   Since it is hard to find M2 standoffs long enough (you need 20mm to clear the heatsink) you have to stack a couple of 10mm ones.  Note the fan is off-center from the heat sink but as it happens the center of the fan is "dead" (doesn't move any air) so...


                PS: I would distribute the SVG/PDF for the fan plate but when I try to upload it here the forum system tells me that file type is forbidden .   I will see what I can do to distribute it another way...


                2016-09-08 15.22.47.jpg

                • 5. Re: heat sink

                  And yet another way to add a fan to the Joule... you may laugh, but this actually worked fine.   I am using a powered hub here, though.


                  2016-09-05 08.40.49.jpg

                  • 6. Re: heat sink

                    By the way, I recently was involved in a Joule workshop which used the "recommended" Sunon 30mm x 30mm fan.   While it is possible to use this fan, attaching it using a small square of double-sided tape in the middle of the fan's hub (the non-spinning side, of course), and it cools the Joule fine, we had a lot of trouble with fans breaking because when you press down on the outside frame of the fan, it stresses the (relatively slender) plastic struts holding the frame to the hub, since only the hub is actually supported by the heatsink.   As a result, we had many fans break...


                    Therefore I strongly recommend getting a 25mm x 25mm fan instead.   Then you can also attach it with a pair of M2.5 bolts to the heatsink.


                    Alternatively you can try attaching the 30mm x 30mm fan along one side, aligning it with one side (a side without slots) and putting tape on the outside, rather than (or in addition to) double-sided tape on the hub.   This will support the outer frame along with the hub.  The fan will then be off-center with respect to the heatsink but since the airflow is maximal in an annulus, and there is actually no airflow through the hub of the fan, this actually might even be better for cooling.


                    The other thing I noticed was that small fans are actually more widely available (and cheaper) in 12V varieties than 5V.   So if you run your system off 12V, and plan to hang a lot of things off the USB, you might want to power the fan from 12V rather than 5V, since the on-board regulator on the default carrier board is relatively small.   That will save 5V margin for USB.   Even these small fans use 100mA to 120mA at 5V.