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Voltage Regulator Heatsink Ventilation?

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Electric Rain

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I have come across many schematics that require voltage regulators, and I like my projects enclosed in a nice, pretty, plastic box. So I need to know, if my voltage regulator requires a heat sink, does it need to be ventilated at all? I'd like an answer ASAP please. :) (Not to sound pushy.)
 

Klaus

New Member
Well, here is your ASAP answer :evil:
Hint: if you are inviting replies to your question, the very last thing you want to do is to use the words 'urgent' 'ASAP' or any other hurry up reminder. You are asking for free info after all and that comes at the price of "patience". I mean, who do you think you are, to demand 'ASAP from total strangers? Ask nicely and you get a nice answer.

Now, to your problem, if you heat something up inside a closed box, would you think it gets cooler inside? No? right, you have to let the heat out. You have the option to use a metal box or a plastic one with a metal lid and conduct the heat through that. You can also use a very large box that has sufficient heat loss through its walls (and plastic is not a very good conductor of heat) or you can drill ventilation holes, keeping in mind that heat rises. So, cool air in at the bottom, heat out at the top.
Only for very small heat generation, where the heat sink barely gets warmer than the ambient in open air, would you get away with enclosing it inside a box. In that case, all that the heatsink does is to conduct concentrated heat away from the component to spread out over a larger surface.
But, common sense would have told you all that anyway :wink:
Klaus
 

Electric Rain

New Member
Thanks for the help you guys. And alright, I won't use "ASAP" anymore. Sorry if I came across rude. But I'm really a nice guy. :D Maybe I just take ASAP to lightly. But anyway, thanks.
 
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