A method to evaluate the health and energy density performance of a wet tantalum capacitor using dc partial discharge analysis
Burke, Kevin M.
MetadataShow full item record
The ability to assess, predict and utilize the maximum energy capabilities of a given energy storage capacitor configuration has become critical in today’s environment of a growing need for increased energy density in a small given real estate footprint, or a moderately to highly inaccessible location. Energy storage capacitor technologies have matured over the years due to advances in materials, chemistry and circuit technologies. The research described herein, examined a wet tantalum topology, similar to that of an aluminum electrolytic capacitor. Through the last several years, the wet tantalum technology has switched positions repeatedly with thin film technology with respect to the joule per cc ratings. As advances are made in chemistry, the wet tantalum construction has presented an opportunity for the medical industry to reap the benefits of the increased energy capabilities. Before this work there had been no published material on dc partial discharge analysis on wet tantalum capacitors. The author has characterized a given wet tantalum capacitor package and then exposed the capacitor to controlled aging, while also conducting a non-destructive partial discharge examination to assess the maximum possible energy density capabilities. Partial discharge analysis in the dc regime was also discussed as a viable means for predicting premature failure of the devices in question.