chapter  Chapter 30
30 Pages

Applications of Diamond in Computers

WithRichard C. Eden

Diamond offers a unique combination of extremely high thermal conductivity and an electrically insulating nature. This combination makes diamond a very attractive material for use in computer packaging to help cope with the increasingly difficult problems of very high power densities combined with very high interconnect densities. Diamond offers virtually an ideal material for electronic packaging applications, including both single-chip packages and multi-chip module (MCM) substrates. The unique combination in diamond of extremely high thermal conductivity with an electrically insulating nature and a coefficient of thermal expansion fairly close to that of silicon provides the potential for dramatic reductions in package thermal resistance. The selection of substrate material for conventional 2- dimensional packages or MCMs is generally balanced between consideration of thermal expansion coefficient (CTE) match, manufacturability, and cost, and thermal performance. Another important advantage offered by diamond is the possibility of getting away from the undesirable and area-inefficient cavity-down package configurations.