Ansys Icepak: Cooling Simulation for Electronics

Ansys Icepak provides powerful electronic cooling solutions for thermal and fluid flow analyses of integrated circuits (ICs), packages, printed circuit boards (PCBs) and electronic assemblies.

Electronics Cooling and PCB Thermal Simulation and Analysis

Ansys Icepak provides powerful electronic cooling solutions that utilize the industry leading Ansys Fluent computational fluid dynamics (CFD) solver for thermal and fluid flow analyses of integrated circuits (ICs), packages, printed circuit boards (PCBs) and electronic assemblies. The Ansys Icepak CFD solver uses the Ansys Electronics Desktop (AEDT) graphical user interface (GUI).

- Industry Leading Multiscale Multiphysics
- High-fidelity CFD Solver
- Comprehensive Thermal Reliability Solution
- Unstructured, Body-fitted Meshing

Why Use Ansys Icepak?

Engineers can rely on Icepak for an integrated electronics cooling solution for electronic applications ranging in scale from individual ICs to packages and PCBs, up to computer housings and entire data centres.

The Icepak solver performs conduction, convection and radiation conjugate heat transfer analyses. It has many advanced capabilities to model laminar and turbulent flows, and species analysis including radiation and convection. Icepak provides a vast library of fans, heatsinks and materials to furnish solutions to everyday electronic cooling concerns.


Extensive Libraries for Thermal Physics

Ansys Icepak’s library contains an extensive collection of a wide range of useful materials that can be assigned to surfaces, solids and fluids. Icepak offers a streamlined electrothermal CAD-centric multiphysics solution by importing native MCAD & ECAD designs. Automated CAD geometry cleanup and healing functions, along with many editing options, facilitate easy simulation setup and analysis. A vast commercial library with a considerable number of Icepak 3-D fans and heat sinks is at the designer’s fingertips to solve typical thermal problems.


Convenient Slider Bar Meshing

Ansys Icepak automates mesh generation while enabling you to customize the meshing parameters to refine the mesh and optimize trade-offs between computational cost and solution accuracy. Slider bar mesh settings let you make the mesh fine for objects where the temperature and velocity gradients are high and coarser where the gradients are small. These features make it easy to create a suitable mesh for performing thermal analyses. Additionally, arbitrary “Mesh Regions” let users assemble ECAD and MCAD that provide thermal solutions for complete product design.



Ansys Icepak provides native parametric “what if” and Design of Experiment (DoE) analyses on geometry, materials and power losses using ANSYS Optimetrics. For instance, you can easily calculate the electrothermal impact when you vary via drill size, pad sizes and/or input currents for a PCB via. The eddy current impact of transformers and coils are easily accounted for in the Maxwell-to-Icepak electrothermal analysis, ensuring the highest accuracy within a very easy-to-use and intuitive graphical user interface.

Simple and Intuitive Interface

Ansys Icepak’s ribbon-based interface delivers a rich and user-friendly experience. ANSYS Icepak within the Electronics Desktop supports Iron Python scripting with automated recording and playback. It offers native Java, VB and Iron Python scripting capabilities. Scripting and journaling capabilities in Icepak are very useful in automating lengthy and mundane tasks for everyday analysis and design.



Ansys Icepak software contains a full suite of qualitative and quantitative post-processing tools to generate meaningful graphics, animations and reports that can readily convey simulation results to colleagues and customers. Visualization of velocity vectors, temperature contours, fluid particle traces, iso-surface displays, cut planes and x–y plots of results data are all available for interpreting the results of an electronics cooling simulation. Customized reports, including images, can be automatically created for distributing results data, identifying trends in the simulation and reporting fan and blower operating points. ANSYS Icepak includes ANSYS CFD-Post for advanced post-processing and animation tools.


To accelerate model development, Ansys Icepak imports both electrical CAD (ECAD) and mechanical CAD (MCAD) data from a variety of sources. Icepak directly supports files that were created using EDA software such as Altium Designer, Cadence®, Zuken®, Sigrity®, Synopsys® , ODB++, IPC2581 and Mentor Graphics®.

Ansys Icepak directly supports the import of mechanical CAD data from neutral file formats including STEP and IGES files. Ansys SpaceClaim enables Icepak to import geometry from all major mechanical CAD packages through the Ansys Workbench geometry interfaces. Geometry imported from ECAD and MCAD can be combined into smart objects to efficiently create models of electronic assemblies.

Automated Design Flows for Multiphysics Simulation

Utilising the industry-leading ANSYS Fluent computational fluid dynamics, ANSYS Icepak is built upon the ANSYS Electronics Desktop (AEDT) graphical user interface (GUI). This provides a CAD-centric solution for engineers who can leverage the easy-to-use ribbon interface to manage thermal issues within the same unified framework as ANSYS HFSS, ANSYS Maxwell and ANSYS Q3D Extractor. Electrical and mechanical engineers working in this environment will enjoy a completely automated design flow with seamless coupling from HFSS, Maxwell and Q3D Extractor into Icepak for thermal analysis.

Electromagnetic Losses with Thermal Coupling For Temperature-Dependent Antenna Performance Assessment (Icepak & HFSS)

Ensuring the thermal stability of antenna-enabled 5G infrastructure, automotive radar, IoT devices and mobile electronic devices is critical in producing expected behavior. Power hungry activity such as video calls, online-based games or varying environmental conditions causes significant swings in device temperatures. If a phone’s battery becomes too hot, it can lose charge or even create safety issues. Also, high temperatures can affect other electronic components within a phone and impact RF antenna performance. Breakdown of a phone’s connectivity with mobile carriers, Bluetooth or Wi-Fi is traceable to thermal problems.

You can predict these issues before you build the hardware by simulating your design using Ansys tools. For example, electrical engineers can dynamically link Ansys HFSS and Ansys Icepak in the Electronics Desktop to simulate the temperature of the antenna. Based on the electromagnetic and thermal coupling solutions, they can modify antenna design and predict antenna efficiency and the overall thermal and EM performance of the product. These EM and thermal simulations help to improve wireless communications, boost signal coverage and maintain connectivity for antenna-enabled systems.

Board-Level Electrothermal Coupling (Icepak and SIwave)

Even a marginal rise in temperature can affect the performance and reliability of electronic components, leading to system-wide problems. Board-level power integrity simulations within SIwave can be combined with Icepak thermal simulations to get a complete picture of a PCB’s electrothermal performance. SIwave and Icepak automatically exchange DC power and temperature data to calculate Joule heating losses within PCBs and packages to obtain highly accurate temperature field and resistive loss distributions. These DC electrothermal solutions let you manage the heat produced by your designs and predict thermal performance and safe operating temperatures of chips, packages and boards.

Can Ansys Help Transform Your Product Design and Development Processes?

Wilde Analysis has been an Ansys channel partner since 2000 and used the software within consulting projects for over 30 years.

Our combined software, training and consulting solutions enable you to exploit simulation within your business efficiently and effectively, with expert support and mentoring from our experienced technical services team.

For more information or to arrange an informal, no-obligation discussion on your requirements, please complete the form opposite or contact us using the details below.

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