Icepak Objects

ANSYS Icepak software contains a streamlined user interface that speaks the language of electronics design engineers, which enables the rapid creation and simulation of electronics cooling models. Models are created by simply dragging and dropping icons of familiar predefined objects – cabinets, fans, circuit boards, vents, heat sources, heat sinks, etc. – to create models of complex electronic assemblies. These “smart objects” capture geometric information, material properties, and boundary conditions – all of which can be fully parametric for performing sensitivity studies and design optimization.

ANSYS Icepak objects enable rapid model creation
View a larger image of a Electric potential contours on a trace in a printed circuit board

 

ECAD/MCAD Interfaces

To accelerate model development, ANSYS Icepak imports both electronic CAD (ECAD) and mechanical CAD (MCAD) data from a variety of sources. ANSYS Icepak supports IDF, MCM, BRD and TCB files that were created using EDA software such as Cadence Allegro, and Gerber files that were created using Cadence, Synopsys, Zuken, and Mentor. Mechanical CAD data can be imported from a variety of neutral files formats including STEP, IGES and DXF files. Geometry imported from ECAD and MCAD also can be combined with smart objects to quickly and efficiently create models of electronic assemblies.

Electric potential contours on a trace in a printed circuit board imported from ECAD data
View a larger image of a Electric potential contours on a trace in a printed circuit board

 

Flexible, Automatic Meshing

ANSYS Icepak software automatically generates highly accurate, conformal meshes that represent the true shape of electronic components rather than rough, stair-step approximations. Meshing algorithms generate both multi-block and unstructured, hex-dominant meshes, which distribute the mesh appropriately to resolve the fluid boundary-layer. While the meshing process is fully automated, users can customize the meshing parameters to refine the mesh and optimize the trade-off between computational cost and solution accuracy. The meshing flexibility of ANSYS Icepak software results in the fastest solution times possible without compromising accuracy.

Multi-level hex-dominant mesh on a heatsink-fan assembly represented directly as CAD geometry
View a larger image of a Multi-level hex-dominant mesh on a heatsink-fan assembly represented directly as CAD geometry

 

Robust Numerical Solutions

ANSYS Icepak uses state-of-the-art technology available in the ANSYS FLUENT computational fluid dynamics (CFD) solver for the thermal and fluid-flow calculations. The CFD solver solves fluid flow and includes all modes of heat transfer – conduction, convection and radiation – for both steady-state and transient thermal-flow simulations. The solver uses a multi-grid scheme to accelerate solution convergence for complex conjugate heat transfer problems. The ANSYS Icepak solver provides complete mesh flexibility, and allows the user to solve even the most complex electronic assemblies using unstructured meshes, providing robust and extremely fast solution times.

Thermal management of a network server simulated with ANSYS Icepak software
View a larger image of a Thermal management of a network server simulated with ANSYS Icepak software

 

Results Visualization

ANSYS Icepak contains a full suite of qualitative and quantitative post-processing tools are available to generate meaningful graphics, animations and reports to easily convey simulation results to engineers and non-engineers alike. Visualization of velocity vectors, temperature contours, fluid particle traces, iso-surface displays, cut-planes, and XY plots of results data are all available for interpreting the results of an electronics cooling simulation. Customized reports, including images, can be automatically created for distributing results data, identifying trends in the simulation, and reporting fan and blower operating points. ANSYS Icepak also exports results data for post processing with ANSYS CFD-Post.

Fluid streamlines and temperature contours on a heak sink assembly
View a larger image of a Fluid streamlines and temperature contours on a heak sink assembly

 

SIwave Interface

ANSYS Icepak provides an interface to SIwave to provide a full suite of software tools to address the electrical and thermal simulation requirements of the electronics design engineer. SIwave software extracts frequency-dependent electronic circuit models of signal and power distribution networks from device layout databases for modeling integrated circuit packages and printed circuit boards. Based on a SIwave simulation, the DC power distribution profile of printed circuit board layers can be imported into ANSYS Icepak software for a thermal analysis of the board. The coupling between SIwave and ANSYS Icepak enables users to predict both internal temperatures and accurate component junction temperatures for printed circuit boards and packages.

DC voltage drop simulation with SIwave (left) and resultant temperatures in PCB board (right) based on imported power map
View a larger image View a larger image

 

Interface to Structural Simulation

Following an ANSYS Icepak simulation, the temperature data from a thermal-flow analysis can be transferred to an ANSYS structural mechanics software product using the ANSYS Workbench platform. ANSYS structural mechanics software provides a comprehensive set of capabilities for modeling both linear and nonlinear structural mechanics for both static and dynamic systems. The interaction between ANSYS Icepak and ANSYS structural mechanics software allows users to evaluate both the temperatures and resulting thermal stresses of electronic components.

View a larger image of a Temperature profile in a computer graphics card; ANSYS Icepak results shown using ANSYS CFD Post
Temperature profile in a computer graphics card; ANSYS Icepak results mapped onto a thermal-stress model using the ANSYS Workbench platform
View a larger image of a Temperature profile in a computer graphics card; ANSYS Icepak results shown using ANSYS CFD Post

 

Macros

ANSYS Icepak includes many macros designed to automate common model building tasks. Macros are available for creating different types of packages, heat sinks, thermoelectric coolers and JEDEC test configurations.

ANSYS Icepak macro dialog box, macro used for creating an angled fin heat sink
View a larger image of a ANSYS Icepak macro dialog box, macro used for creating an angled fin heat sink

 

Libraries

  • Materials – Material properties for fluids, solids and surfaces.
  • Fans – Fan geometry and operating curves.
  • Heaksinks – Aavid heatsinks by part number.
  • Thermoelectric Coolers – Melcor and Marlow TECs by part number.
  • Filters – Fan air filter by vendor part number.
  • Packages – BGA, FPBGA, and TBGA packages.

Add-on Modules

ANSYS Icepar
ANSYS Icepar provides powerful parallel performance computing options to solve large scale electronics cooling models. Calculation speeds can be increased dramatically by performing simulations in parallel, either on a multi-core PC, or distributed over a large computing cluster.

ANSYS Icepro
ANSYS Icepro enables the import and conversion of MCAD geometry into ANSYS Icepak objects. ANSYS Icepro has both automatic and manual tools for defeaturing geometry for thermal simulation. Native Pro/Engineer, STEP, ACIS and IGES files are supported.

Easily convert imported MCAD geometry to ANSYS Icepak objects
View a larger image of a ANSYS Icepak macro dialog box, macro used for creating an angled fin heat sink

 

ANSYS Iceopt
ANSYS Iceopt provides robust design optimization capabilities for ANSYS Icepak. ANSYS Iceopt extends the parametric capabilities of ANSYS Icepak to enable the in-depth design analysis and optimization of electronic components.

ANSYS Icegrb
ANSYS Icegrb enables the import of Gerber files into ANSYS Icepak for the thermal analysis of PCB boards and packages.