Watch: Energy dense, very low-profile capacitors, now 5,000 hour-rated

17 June 2020

First introduced in 2018, Cornell Dubilier Electronics Inc. (CDE) has made significant design tweaks to their groundbreaking THA and THAS series Thinpack capacitors. The product updates raise the rated life to 5,000 hours, a 66% increase over the first-generation devices.

The key strength of the series is still high energy density. The 85º C THA series Thinpack capacitors are only 8.2 mm thick, and 9 mm for the 105º C THAS series. While of similar height to V-chip electrolytics, tantalums and board-mounted axials, THA and THAS offer much higher bulk-storage capability. For example, a single THA/THAS capacitor can replace an entire board full of SMT, axial or radial aluminum electrolytic or solid tantalum capacitance arrays. The upgrade to a 5,000-hour rating expands the potential range of applications to longer life commercial and military/aero devices. All THA/THAS capacitors sold after January Source: Cornell Dubilier Electronics Inc. Source: Cornell Dubilier Electronics Inc. 1, 2020, will meet the new performance specifications, and pricing is unchanged.

THA/THAS series capacitors are thinner and more cost-effective than most alternative technologies. Unlike traditional cylindrical electrolytics, THA/THAS capacitors have sealed, laser-welded aluminum cases to eliminate the need for space-wasting end seal gaskets. Compared to cylindricals, flat THA and THAS capacitors are up to 60% smaller by volume. The design includes a valve to vent hydrogen gas buildups that may otherwise cause pressure-related swelling. The 105° C rated THAS series adds a 0.38 mm form-fitting stainless-steel sleeve to further prevent potential swelling at the highest temperatures.

Compared to a bank of SMT or axial aluminum electrolytic capacitors comprising similar total values, THA/THAS capacitors can offer significant cost, weight and space savings. The benefits include requiring about 70% less board space than alternatives. Even where size or weight reduction is not essential, the smaller part and connection count improves overall circuit reliability (one part versus many). The THA is rated at 5,000 hours life at 85° C; and the THAS is rated at 5,000 hours life at 105° C. Values range from 140 µF at 450 V DC to 18,000 µF at 10 V DC, with 72 capacitance/voltage combinations available for each series.

Potential applications include any circuits that require high capacitance bulk storage and filtering. These include tablets, laptops, instrumentation, commercial-grade LED driver modules, compact power supplies, drones and RPVs, set-top boxes, 1U rack-mounted devices and other high-performance, low-profile devices.

To contact the author of this article, email engineering360editors@globalspec.com

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