Understanding Capacitors. Design Note 23

TANTALUM As you know, Capacitors are inevitable parts of an electronic circuit, without which the circuit design is incomplete. Different types of capacitors are used in electronic circuits; each performs a function in the circuit. But basically, all the capacitors act as energy storing and transferring devices. Let us discuss the capacitor types, identification methods and functions.
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Selection and use of Capacitors Circuit Clinic 2


Let us move to the world of capacitors. You can see a number of capacitors scattered here and there in the circuit board starting from the front end to the last. These capacitors are doing lot of job in the circuit like smoothing, filtering, coupling, de-coupling, buffering etc. You can also see the size and shape difference. The capacitors may be electrolytic or disc but the structure is identical in both having two electrodes separated by a dielectric material. But the functions will be different. For example, a Smoothing capacitor in the power supply section will remove ripples from AC to give a clean DC while a capacitor in the audio circuit acts as the noise filter. So the selection of capacitor and its use in the different parts of the circuit is important. Electrolytic capacitors are polarized so always connect with correct polarity otherwise, it will explode. Disc capacitors are non polarized so they can be connected either way round.
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Disc Capacitor.How to identify?

In Disc capacitors, only a number is printed on its body so it is very difficult to determine its value in PF, KPF, uF, n etc. In some capacitor, its value is printed in uF eg.0.1 in some others EIA code is used e.g. 104. Here explains the method to identify the Disc capacitor

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