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The Vertical carbon nanotube arrays (VACNTs), as a result of its flexibility and axial high thermal conductivity, exert a huge potential and play an increasingly important role in thermal interface materials (TIMs). This paper proposed a model which can predict the contact thermal resistance of VACNTs. The contact thermal resistance of VACNTs under different pressures is calculated and compared with the experimental data. Also, the effect of variations in the surface roughness and VACNTs parameters on the contact thermal resistance is investigated. Results show that the theoretical results are in good agreement with the experimental data. The contact thermal resistance is composed of interfacial thermal resistance, constriction thermal resistance, and VACNTs resistance. Among which the interfacial thermal resistance is the major thermal resistance. The variations in VACNTs-length and diameter can change the bending degree of VACNTs under the same pressure, which presents important implications on contact thermal resistance and can be used to optimize the contact thermal resistance of VACNTs. The surface roughness exerts little effect on contact thermal resistance.
PAPER REVISED: 2018-08-07
PAPER ACCEPTED: 2018-09-26
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