Environmental Stress and Reliability Testing

Electronic devices are getting smaller while power requirements are increasing. Proper management of thermal stresses is therefore becoming more important, and high performance demands are being placed on cooling systems in electronic devices. The form factor of these devices makes heat rejection a challenge for the product design engineer. For example, in a modern MP3 player, the battery resides close to the hard disk and the processing circuitry. This heat from these components is eventually transferred to the battery pack, adding to the battery’s own internally generated heat. Thus, thermal management of these battery packs is of utmost importance for a reliably performing product.

thermal testExponent simulates heat transfers within a product and analyzes the performance of the product in various environmental conditions, including stresses related to foreseeable user abuse conditions. This capability is especially useful in evaluating thermal management aspects of lithium ion battery packs. Exponent has the capability of monitoring and modeling the performance of various components in real time under various thermal conditions. This includes determining hot spots and temperature rise and distribution inside battery packs, power supplies, chargers, and host devices.

The following is an overview of the nature of environmental stress tests that can be performed at Exponent:

  • Impact tests
  • Random and controlled impact tests
  • Temperature tests
  • Random and controlled drop tests
  • Pressure tests
  • Humidity tests
  • Random and controlled vibration tests
  • Altitude tests
  • Electrical overstress tests
  • EMI tests
  • Mechanical shock tests
  • ESD tests
  • Human factor aided abuse testing
  • Vehicle accident testing