Heatsinks are vital components in many pieces of commercial and industrial equipment, from tiny LED lighting rigs to massive server racks and industrial generators. They dissipate heat that can otherwise cause catastrophic breakdowns and permanent equipment damage, but they must therefore be constructed to exacting standards to ensure performance and reliability.
If you need custom-designed heatsinks for a commercial or industrial application, you should have them fabricated by a machine shop with CNC machining capabilities. CNC machining represents the bleeding edge of metal fabrication technology and has many advantages over human-operated machining. Here are just a few of them.
For a heatsink to work efficiently, it must be manufactured with extreme precision. Cooling vane dimensions and spacing must be exact and consistent, and the sink as a whole must fit into its allocated space within the equipment you are designing it for. This is particularly true of small heatsinks, for example, those used in prototyped semiconductors and consumer electronics.
CNC stands for computer numerical control and refers to the sophisticated computers and software that operate CNC-enabled machine tools. These computerized machines operate with levels of precision well beyond the abilities of any human machine operator. This makes them ideal for creating heatsinks and other precision components.
The precision offered by CNC machine tools is also consistent, no matter how many heatsinks you need and how quickly you need them. With CNC machining, every heatsink you order will be identical in design and dimensions.
Machining offers superior precision and customization options compared to other heatsink production methods, such as extrusion and die casting. However, machining heatsinks using conventional machine tools can also be very time-consuming, which can limit the size of production runs.
CNC-controlled machine tools can operate virtually 24/7, with very little downtime required for recalibration and maintenance. They also work faster than the most experienced human toolers, especially when it comes to smaller, precision-made objects. If you need custom heatsinks in a hurry, CNC machining can get you what you need as quickly as possible.
Suitable For All Metals And Alloys
Most heatsinks are made from aluminum alloys, but a number of different alloys are used for different applications, and each has its own material properties and tolerances. CNC machine tools can automatically adjust operations to account for different materials, eliminating human errors caused by working with several different materials in a short time frame.
If you need the superior thermal conductivity and corrosion resistance provided by copper heatsinks, CNC tooling is even more useful. As a relatively soft and malleable metal, copper can be difficult to machine even for experienced tool operators. CNC machine tools will have no difficulties adjusting to working with copper.
For more information on CNC machining, contact a professional near you.