Thermal Management Solution

Thermal Management Solution2020-03-16T15:06:27-07:00


Norsat has the experience and tools required to customize the standard BUCs and SSPAs to meet the very demanding airborne, maritime and COTM thermal and mechanical requirements. Norsat works with the client to understand the requirements and uses simulation tools and test to develop and verify a design that meets the clients’ requirements.



Norsat offers a range of industry-leading RF Block Upconverters (BUC) and Solid-State Power Amplifi ers (SSPA) with some of the best SWAP and environmental tolerances available. However, sometimes an off the shelf BUC does not meet the demanding thermal and mechanical requirements of a specifi c application or project. For example, airborne applications often require the BUCs to operate and survive extreme temperatures while maintaining RF performance and reliability. BUCs inside maritime, communications-on-the-move (COTM) and airborne systems experience higher temperatures and often have restricted airfl ows for traditional cooling. In airborne applications, altitude exacerbates the problem since there is little air for cooling. Space is often at a premium so BUCs are expected to perform under these extreme conditions with added volume.


The answer is to customize an off-the-shelf BUC or SSPA to meet the specific mechanical and thermal requirements. Norsat is familiar with the requirements of RTCA DO-160 and MIL STD 810 and has experience tailoring our products to meet these demanding requirements. As Norsat is the designer and manufacturer of these products, Norsat has detailed and intimate knowledge of the product and can modify the designs to meet almost any situation. Norsat can work with:

  • Heat sink designs

  • Heat pipes/ thermal chambers

  • Thermal Interface Materials

  • Materials

  • Finishes

  • External fans

  • Radiation

  • Convection cooling

  • Orientation

Norsat will work with the customer’s engineering team to understand the thermal and mechanical requirements and propose a solution. Norsat uses Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) Finite Element Analysis (FEA) tools to model and solves the three-dimensional heat transfer equations for the thermal management design. Iterative simulations are used to define thermal bottlenecks at the early design stage. The simulation tools provide:

  • contour plots for temperature and fluid dynamics profile

  • estimates of specific temperatures such as MMIC case temperatures or power supply components

  • heat flow

  • airflow, pressure drops