Capacitor Guide

Basics of capacitors [Lesson 4] What are the different types of ceramic capacitor?

This technical column describes the basic facts about capacitors.
This lesson describes the different types of ceramic capacitors.

Lesson 4: What are the different types of ceramic capacitor?

There are many different types of ceramic capacitors. One feature of Murata Manufacturing is that we develop and offer products that suit our customers' applications based on specific requests, as shown in Table 1.

Table 1. Types of ceramic capacitor

  Type
For general electronic devices General purpose
Use in automobiles
Special purpose High-frequency low-loss
Microchip
Low ESL
Array-type
Medium voltage
Trimmer capacitor

<General purpose capacitors for general electronic devices>

These are standard ceramic capacitors, and they are the most often used ceramic capacitors. We offer a comprehensive lineup, including sizes from 0.4 × 0.2 mm to 5.7 × 5.0 mm, capacitances from 0.1 pF to 100 uF, and voltage ratings from 4 V dc to 630 V dc.

<High-frequency low-loss capacitors>

These capacitors were developed for use in high-frequency circuits in cell phones and other communications modules, mobile communication base stations, and similar applications. They use Cu with small resistivity in the internal electrode to achieve low loss at high frequency.

<Microchip capacitors>

These capacitors were developed for embedding in ICs and other packages in high-speed wireless communication circuits and optical communications devices. Au is used in the surface electrode to produce strong high-frequency characteristics and good bonding ability.

Figure 1. Microchip capacitor

<Low ESL capacitors>

These are capacitors with a smaller Equivalent Series Inductance (ESL) component that were developed to enable high-speed charging and discharging in high-frequency circuits of CPUs and other devices. The current pathway is shortened and the electrodes are arranged so that they cancel out the electromagnetic field to achieve low ESL.

*ESL was described in Basics of capacitors [Lesson 2] "What kind of characteristics do capacitors exhibit?" -- click here to read.

Figure 2. Low ESL capacitors (from the left: LW reverse geometry-type, three-terminal-type, and multi-terminal-type)

<Capacitor array>

These arrays were developed in order to improve packaging density in parts and reduce mounting costs. Recently, the world's smallest capacitor array at 0.9 × 0.6 mm has been created.

Figure 3. 0906 size capacitor array

<Medium voltage capacitors>

These capacitors use a high breakdown voltage ceramic dielectric substance and a special internal electrode structure to achieve rated voltage in kV units. Moreover, some of these capacitors are approved by International  Safety Standards as switching supply primary side X capacitors and Y capacitors.

<Trimmer capacitors>

These capacitors were developed to enable continuous variability of capacitance in the capacitor. They are used in fine control of the frequency in oscillation circuits and in circuit impedence matching.

Figure 4. Trimmer capacitor

Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. Component Division Sales Engineering Department K.U

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