Multi-domain electro-thermal-optical models of LEDs are required so that their thermal and optical behavior may be predicted during a luminaire design process. Today, no standardized approach exists for the extraction of such models. Therefore, models are not readily provided by LED suppliers to end-users. This results in designers of LED-based luminaires wasting time on LED characterization and ad hoc model extraction themselves. The Delphi4LED project aims to address these deficiencies by identifying standardizable methodologies to extract both electro-optical and thermal compact models of LEDs that together can be used in a multi-domain simulation context. This article describes a methodology to extract compact thermal models of LEDs that are dynamic, in that they accommodate transient thermal effects, and are boundary condition-independent, in that their accuracy is independent of their thermal operating environment. Such models are achieved by first proposing an equivalent thermal nodal network topology. The thermal resistances and capacitances of that network are identified by means of optimization so that the transient thermal response of the network matches that of either an equivalent calibrated 3D thermal model or a transient thermal measurement of a physical sample. The accuracy of the thermal network is then verified by comparing the thermal compact model with a 3D detailed model, which predicts thermal responses within a 3D system-level model.
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