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Types of capacitors

Updated on April 21, 2011

A capacitor is component that can store electric charge and normally consist of two plates that can are parallel to each other, very close and are separated by an inductor. When a capacitor is connected to a voltage supplied, current flows through the circuit and electrons are stored on one of the capacitor’s plates. On the other plate there would be a shortage of electrons, in this case the capacitor is said to be charged and if its disconnected from the supply, the imbalance between the two plates will remain. If a charged capacitor is connected in a circuit it will for a short time act as a voltage source just like a battery

There are three factors that determined the capacitance of a capacitor

  • Area, common to the two plates
  • Separation distance between the two plates
  • The property of the inductor used

Capacitors types are:

Metalized film Capacitors

Metalized Capacitors uses a very thin aluminum foil, interlink with a very thin plastic dielectric. For high voltage capacitors, polyester, polystyrene plastic materials are used. Dielectric strength – is the ability of an inductor to resist the flow of current when voltage is applied across it.

Ceramic Capacitors

Ceramic capacitors are used when small values of capacitance and large value of linkage current are acceptable. Ceramic capacitors are inexpensive and consist of a thin ceramic dielectric that is metalized on each side and coated with a thick protective layer usually applied by Deeping the component in an electrified protective material. Both plastics film and ceramic capacitors are available in ranges of 10pfto1uf

Electrolytic Capacitors

Electrolytic capacitors are high voltage capacitors, they give high value of capacitance in a small component at the expenses of wide tolerance in the marked value typically between -25 to 50% and the necessity of connecting the capacitor so that one terminal is always positive. The most commonly used types of electrolytic capacitors is aluminum electrolytic capacitor. Electrolytic capacitors must not be subjected to voltages in the wrong direction.

Variable Capacitors

These capacitors are variable in values. Either air or thin mica sheet are used as dielectric and therefore variable capacitors is usually low, there two types of variable capacitors namely

a)      Rotary

b)      Compression type


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    • profile image

      ann may 4 years ago

      i need more types of capacitors

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      shubham 5 years ago

      will you plzz give me some knowledge of trimer capacitor

    • profile image

      poloy 5 years ago

      i want to see a circuit diagram of power stereo amplifier w/ a value of 12v,1000w

    • profile image

      Theophilus Gold Attuquaye 5 years ago

      I need a capacitor of 2600 Farad capacitance of 220v and where can i get some to buy and the price. Thanks

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      palmon 5 years ago

      i need more types of capacitor

    • profile image

      dewanapan38 6 years ago

      i need proper defination and more type

    • profile image

      ali adam baba 6 years ago

      iwant to know the uses of running starting capacitors and also how to connect them in parallel or series.fomula for calculating them

    • profile image

      Swati Dubey 6 years ago

      its great to know about these capacitors...

      could u plz tell me some more types of capacitors????

    • profile image

      javi 6 years ago

      where are the capacitors located, and what the hell do they look like, it's freaking hot!!!

    • profile image

      Neo Cambell 7 years ago

      I was looking for some capacitor types in motherboards and VGA cards and found a nice article at which is interesting. Hope this will help you guys as well.

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      Chris Beardmore 7 years ago

      I want to inspect your capacitors.

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      Steven Wheatley 7 years ago

      I want to see elvis presley again

    • profile image

      Chris Beardmore 7 years ago

      I need two more types of capacitors or i may die?.

    • profile image

      Kofi Asare Owusu 7 years ago

      I need more info

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      khier 7 years ago

      is that all the types of capacitor ?

    • oderog profile image

      oderog 7 years ago from Nairobi

      Thanks Peter Enmore will have a look at your capacitors

    • profile image

      Peter Enmore 7 years ago

      Do you have any other pictures of your capacitors? You can see a full line of our resistors on our site at

    • profile image

      Saloni 7 years ago

      Nice to get on the full idea how the capacitors actually look..........