- The metal lines heat up in a way that cannot be explained with the laws ruling heat behaviour in our everyday experience.
- The researchers explained the experimental observations, showing that heat flow finds it difficult to make a sharp turn when going from metal to the substrate, similar to what would happen in a viscous fluid exiting a tube.
- This phenomenon makes it more difficult for the metal line to cool, and therefore its temperature rises to values that cannot be explained with present day models.
- During operation, the most active parts of an electronic device may accumulate high amounts of thermal energy in very localized zones, called Hot Spots.
- This energy accumulation can be very detrimental to the correct functioning of the device, and represents a bottleneck limiting the performance of current processors.
- This discovery paves the way to a better thermal management in electronic devices, since the proposed description represents a significative improvement over the models with which device engineers currently work, based on Fourier’s law.