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CPU termal throttling
There is a security mechanism implemented in the BCM2837 CPU preventing it from self destruction at high temperatures. The CPU starts at a core temperature of 80°C lowering its maximum 1.2Ghz clock rate down to 600MHz in steps. At a level of 85°C and more the CPU runs at 600MHz only.

A standard Raspberry Pi 3 that you run on your desk at a room temperature of 24°C (even with a passive heat sink on the CPU) reaches the core temperature of 80°C easily running a sysbench test with all 4 CPUs as described here. So imagine you would use such a RPi3 in an installation cabinet under industrial conditions where 40°C and more inside a cabinet are most common. Then an RPi3 would run just at 60% of its power.

This is different with netPI. Of course netPI uses the same CPU, but netPI has a better cooling concept using an aluminium heat sink on top of the CPU that conducts its heat to the metallic housing. Additionally netPI consists of an 8 layer PCB while a RPi3 just has 6 and also the PCB is twice as big ensuring a better heat dissipation in general. All these countermeasures lead netPI keeping the CPU clock frequency to maximum 1.2GHz for all 4 cores up to an ambient air temperature of 50°C.
You never fail until you stop trying.“, Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)


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