Complex express TEC testing

L.B. Yershova, G.G. Gromov, V.V. Volodin

RMT Ltd. 53 Leninskij prosp., Moscow 119991 Russia

Thermoelectric coolers (TEC) are high technology multi-component products having a niche market where reliability is the first significance. The tendency to TEC miniaturizing emphasizes it even more. To meet exclusive reliability, a trustworthy control should be imposed at the final Manufacturer’s assembling level (qualification tests) as well as at the incoming and/or operational User’s level.

According to the national and international test standards such as GOST (Russia’s state standard), MIL-STD (the USA’s military standards) and the international Telcordia standards there is one failure criterion for qualifying a TEC. It is a change in the TEC electrical resistance (R). Informally for express TEC control in manufacturing and application, TEC Figure-of-Merit (Z) measurement is widely spread. The Z-value is another parameter quite sensitive to TEC defects or injuring.

In the paper it is shown that there are TEC damage or defect instances not covered by one-parameter testing (R) and even two-parameter testing (R,Z). We offer a three-parameter approach to control TEC’s quality: by measuring TEC electrical resistance (R), Figure-of-Merit (Z) and TEC time constant (t). The paper yields theoretical and experimental results proving it. The experimental check is provided with the help of the original testing device R,Z,t-meter DX3065.