The accurate prediction of operating temperatures of critical electronic parts at the component-, board and system-level is seriously hampered by the lack of reliable, standardized input data. This paper describes a recently-started 3-year European collaborative project, named DELPHI, whose goal is to solve this problem. Some preliminary results are reported on the development of compact thermal models for mono-chip packages. It is the authors’ contention that a future redefinition of the standards is to be expected, is necessary and should include protocols for thermal models in addition to ones for measurements. In the first section of this paper a review is provided of the methods in use for the thermal characterization of component packages with especial emphasis on mono-chip packages. The second section describes the DELPHI project including a discussion of experimental requirements and the issue of international standardization. The third section explains the results of preliminary investigations on an idealized monochip package. The fourth section gives results for a real package, namely a 208-lead Plastic Quad Flat Pack. The final section provides conclusions and directions for future research. The paper finishes with acknowledgments, references and an appendix which contains results for the 208-1ear PQFP modeling. Although DELPHI is concerned with a variety of electronic parts including mono-chip packages, heat sinks, thermal interface materials, etc, this paper focuses on the thermal characterization of mono-chip packages.

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