Steady-state methods for measuring in-plane thermal conductivity of thin films for heat spreading applications

Nicholas J. Hines, Luke Yates, Brian M. Foley, Zhe Cheng, Thomas L. Bougher, Mark S. Goorsky, Karl D. Hobart, Tatyana I. Feygelson, Marko J. Tadjer, Samuel Graham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The development of high thermal conductivity thin film materials for the thermal management of electronics requires accurate and precise methods for characterizing heat spreading capability, namely, in-plane thermal conductivity. However, due to the complex nature of thin film thermal property measurements, resolving the in-plane thermal conductivity of high thermal conductivity anisotropic thin films with high accuracy is particularly challenging. Capable transient techniques exist; however, they usually measure thermal diffusivity and require heat capacity and density to deduce thermal conductivity. Here, we present an explicit uncertainty analysis framework for accurately resolving in-plane thermal conductivity via two independent steady-state thermometry techniques: particle-assisted Raman thermometry and electrical resistance thermometry. Additionally, we establish error-based criteria to determine the limiting experimental conditions that permit the simplifying assumption of one-dimensional thermal conduction to further reduce thermal analysis. We demonstrate the accuracy and precision (<5% uncertainty) of both steady-state techniques through in-plane thermal conductivity measurements of anisotropic nanocrystalline diamond thin films.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number044907
JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation


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