Capacitors are a useful invention that has propelled mankind into a brighter future of electronics.
Capacitors are simply energy-storing devices. These are similar to a battery. A battery releases its energy slowly due to the reaction of its components which then produce electrons. A battery can thus last from a few months to even a year. A capacitor needs to release a large amount of energy in a short span of time, usually seconds. A capacitor basically consists of two metal plates separated by a non-conducting medium. The power of the capacitor depends on the function it has to carry out. Due to its capability of delivering a large amount energy for a fraction of a second, it is used in many sectors for different purposes. For instance, television sets, radio and other kinds of electronic equipment. Tuning a radio to a station, taking a flash photo with any camera or changing the channels on the TV set all of these involve the use of different kinds of capacitors.
There are different types of capacitors manufactured according to the device they are being used in. Some capacitors have a smaller function others are however required to regulate rather large machinery. Thus, according to their functionality and characteristics, the components of every capacitors varies greatly. There can be a marked difference in the voltage margin, temperature stability and capacitance tolerance. Capacitors also provide a degree of stability to any given gadget or appliance.
Every capacitor will have a specification related to the maximum voltage it can tolerate. This value is the last limit till which a capacitor can tolerate the voltage, a voltage beyond the specified range will definitely cause damage to the appliance. Hence, capacitors with a broader range of voltage are selected for every appliance for added safety. High voltage capacitors are used in appliances which basically need a high burst of energy. There are many options available that help customers redefine their technical and economic considerations depending on the function. According to their function and a size parameter, the high voltage capacitors make use of different dielectrics like plastic, polyester and polycarbonate.
Another popular type of capacitors are the aluminium electrolytic capacitors. These include rolled up strips of aluminium foil with a strip of absorbent paper between them, which is soaked in an electrolyte solution. All these components are sealed in a can. These have a very high capacitance range, making them one of the largest capacitors in terms of energy storage. These also have a high voltage tolerance up to 100V. Aluminium electrolytic capacitors are very popular because they provide high capacitance values in small packages at a lower cost. They are majorly used in almost every kind of circuit, due to their low cost, ready availability and also as they store a large amount of energy. These are mostly also used where a large pulse of energy is to be generated such as in the starting circuits of fluorescent lamps and photographic flashes in cameras.