Heat sink and shielding for HackRF One

The HackRF one PCB is manufactured with an option for a shield. This shield is available from NooElec. It’s a simple and quick addition, just some easy soldering. The hardest part is just removing the HackRF one from it’s plastic case.

Below you can see the shield framing installed.

Shield frame installed.

Shield frame installed.

Now with the lid installed and the job is complete.

Shield frame and lid installed.

Shield frame and lid installed.

Next up is adding a small (20mm x 20mm x 6mm) aluminum heatsink to the ARM processor. The ARM processor runs pretty hot on the HackRF and this heatsink will reduce the operating temperature, extending the life of the part. The heatsinks can be found for around $0.50 each on amazon. The most important item is the Arctic Alumina thermal *adhesive*, this ensures the heatsink makes good thermal contact and remains attached under high temperatures. The thermal adhesive can also be found in amazon for $7.99.

HackRF prep for heat sink.

HackRF prep for heat sink.

Below you can see my improvised method of ensuring good contact during the curing phase.

Weighting the adhesive.

Weighting the adhesive.

After about 1 hour the “delicate” process is now complete.

Heatsink installation complete.

Heatsink installation complete.

Close-up of heatsink.

Close-up of heatsink.

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