(hardware) /heet sink/ (from "sink", electronics jargon for something which takes in current) A piece of thermally conductive metal attached to a semiconductor or other electronic device and designed to prevent it from overheating by conducting heat away from it and radiating it to the environment. Heat sinks often have fins to increase their surface area. They occasionally have fans attached. Heat sink compound can be smeared between the device and the heat sink to improve thermal conduction.
Last updated: 1997-06-10