Recent developments in natural graphite composites by GrafTech International, Ltd. have led to novel highly conductive and lightweight materials with thermally non-isotropic structures [1]. The in-plane and out-of-plane thermal conductivities for such materials differ by a factor of up to 50. The non-isotropy in thermal conductivities is found to influence heat dissipation in different ways. This paper investigates the influence of thermal conductivity on the thermal performance of graphite heat sinks. In addition to addressing technology challenges encountered in design and optimization of heat sinks, this paper also discusses the efficient ways to utilize graphite composite materials, which can be expected to play an important role in future electronics cooling applications.

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