As teams throughout Google know very well, thermal management—a small, silent, vital enabler to network infrastructure—significantly affects network operational performance. That’s because electronic components get hot—a problem exacerbated by heightened network demands for improved reliability, higher power density, and speed.
Thermal management has been limited by conventional thermal interface materials (TIMs) and traditional active-cooling methods. Google has made great strides in advances in thermal management already, but additional benefits can be achieved by using it effectively in hardware components such as circuit boards in active antenna units (AAUs) and line cards for routers and switches. Thermal management can help Google data centers, fiber-optics tech, and telecom operators to reach their target network performance metrics and to enable emerging technologies such as 5G, Wi-Fi 6, and supporting 400 GbE speeds.