Thermal resistances at packaging interfaces are occupying a larger portion of the overall thermal resistance from a semiconductor die to ambient. Substantial improvement of the performance of thermal interface materials (TIMs) is required to achieve effective electronic cooling. This report is a brief review of the current status of TIM research. Particular focus is given to the fundamental understanding of heat conduction phenomena in polymer-based TIM composites at packaging interfaces in thin-film form. Promising nanostructured TIMs for future applications are also discussed.

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