Professor Rick Culham is the director of the Microelectronics Heat Transfer Laboratory (MHTL) and an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Waterloo. He received his doctorate from the University of Waterloo, specializing in analytical and experimental analysis of forced convection heat transfer for microelectronics applications. Research interests include modeling and characterization of contacting interfaces and thermal interface materials, development of compact analytical and empirical models at micro- and nano-scales, natural and forced convection cooling, optimization of electronics systems using entropy generation minimization and the characterization of thermophysical properties in electronics and opto-electronics materials.
Professor Culham has more than 100 publications in refereed journals and conferences in addition to numerous technical reports related to microelectronics cooling. He is a member of ASME, IEEE and the Professional Engineers of Ontario.
The Microelectronics Heat Transfer Laboratory was established within the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Waterloo in 1984 in response to the needs of the Canadian industry. The primary interest of the Lab at that time was in air-cooled electronics for the telecommunications industry, with the principal funding provided by Nortel (then Bell Northern Research.) The other primary research interest, thermal contact resistance measurement and analysis, which had begun many years earlier, continued to play an important role. Over the past 22 years, the MHTL has established a reputation for high quality research in heat transfer and contact resistance for a variety of industrial applications and leading edge technologies. The MHTL provides industrial partners access to a knowledge base, experimental equipment and highly skilled research personnel, including professors, staff and students, through both short-term contract testing and long-term, grant-supported research studies. Previous research partners include Nortel Networks, IBM, Motorola, Sun Microsystems, Alcatel, Ford, Seimens, Raytheon and Ferraz Shawmut.