Types of Capacitors

Capacitors are common electrical components used to store energy in an electric field. There are two major types of capacitors i.e Fixed Capacitors and Variable Capacitors, and the type of material determines how they work on a circuit board. fixed capacitors are further divided into polarized and non-polarized groups while variable contains trimming and tuning capacitors. They come in many different shapes and sizes with different values on the capacitance scale. as a result, there are 7 common sub-types of capacitors which will be discussed below in detail.

Types of Capacitors

in this article we’ll learn about:

  • What is a Capacitor?
  • Types of Capacitors and how they can be used with other electrical components to create a circuit.

so, if you want to get detailed knowledge, keep reading…!

What is a Capacitor?

A capacitor is a passive two-terminal electronic component used to store energy in an electric field. This energy is used to filter out a particular frequency or to pass signals of certain frequencies. This is done by allowing electrons to flow through a circuit either in a single direction or in both directions.

They are used in a wide variety of applications and are used in almost every kind of electronic circuit. there are two main types of capacitors. In the first case, we call this a polarized capacitor. In the second case, there is a flow of charge in both directions.

In electrical engineering, capacitance describes the capacity of a device to store an electrical charge or energy in relation to some value such as voltage. It’s also known as the ability to accumulate energy efficiently over time.

Capacitors are held together by either metallic conductors (called plates) or dielectric materials. When power is applied across a capacitor, a layer of electric field builds between these two electrodes because electric charge accumulates on one electrode more than the other and creates an imbalance. The electric symbol for a capacitor looks like this:

electric symbol of capacitor

The capacitance of a Capacitor

The mathematical expansion of capacitance, which is defined as the relationship between electric charge (Q) and voltage (V), is as follows.



  • the coulombs of the electric charge Q.
  • C is the farad capacitance.
  • V is the voltage in volts between the plates.


Fixed Capacitors:

Fixed capacitors are capacitors that are designed to have a specific capacitance value and cannot be adjusted. They are typically made of two conductive plates separated by a dielectric material, such as paper, plastic, or air. Fixed capacitors are used in a variety of electronic circuits, such as filters, timing circuits, and coupling circuits.

Variable Capacitors:

A variable capacitor is a capacitor whose capacitance can be adjusted by changing the area of the plates, the distance between the plates, or the dielectric constant of the dielectric material between the plates. One common use for a variable capacitor is in a tunable radio receiver, where it is used to tune the receiver to the frequency of the desired radio station.

However, Variable Forms of Capacitor come in 7 handy Types which are as follows:

What are the 7 Types of Capacitors and Their Uses?

different types of capacitors are as follows:

  • Ceramic capacitor
  • Glass capacitor
  • Film and paper capacitors
  • Electrolytic capacitor
  • Silver Mica capacitor
  • Supercapacitors
  • Polycarbonate capacitor
  • Tantalum capacitor

Ceramic capacitor

A capacitor is an electronic component that is used in the electronic circuit to store and remove the electric charge. It is an open circuit with conductive electrodes that are separated by an insulator called a dielectric.

A capacitor is used for low-current, high-voltage applications where energy storage is needed, such as analog circuits or high-frequency signal processing. For example, the tuning circuits in radio receivers or the timing circuits in computers.

Ceramic capacitor diagram

A ceramic capacitor is a two-terminal capacitor made of a ceramic semiconductor. These capacitors offer a wide range of applications and can be used in everything from the automobile industry to the biotechnology sector.

The main advantage of ceramic capacitors is durability and low cost. They also have a wide range of applications, making them useful in electronic devices and circuits. Ceramic capacitors are used throughout electronics.

Ceramic capacitors are classified according to their dielectric. The most common type is the multilayer ceramic capacitor (MLCC), which has a dielectric of multiple layers of ceramic. MLCCs are used in a variety of applications, including cell phones, computers, and other electronic devices.

Ceramic capacitors are also classified according to their size. The most common sizes are 0402, 0603, 0805, and 1206. The size of a capacitor is indicated by its length and width in millimeters. For example, a 0402 capacitor is 0.04 inches by 0.02 inches (1.0 mm by 0.5 mm).

They are used in almost every circuit. They are used in the most simple circuits to the most complex ones. We use them in our daily life.

Glass capacitor

most of the construction of a capacitor is done by using a plastic or ceramic dielectric, the glass capacitor uses glass. Since glass is not porous, it is able to create a far superior capacitor than any other type of capacitor.
With a lifespan that can surpass 20 years under normal circumstances, the glass capacitor is an ideal choice for use as a replacement part.

Glass capacitor diagram

A glass capacitor is a durable and cost-effective electrolytic capacitor for use in a power supply where a high current is required. It is made of ceramic or glass body, conductive metal electrode or non-metallic electrode, separator, and dielectric.

In addition to the traditional paper, film, and foil dielectric materials, high-voltage and high-current ceramics, glass, and Teflon as well as other high-dielectric-constant insulators can be used.

Film and paper capacitors (Types of Capacitors)

Film and paper capacitors are specialty capacitors used within electrical devices. These capacitors are used in a wide array of applications. Some of the different film and paper capacitors include ceramic, surface mount, and tantalum to name just a few.

Film and paper capacitors

They prevent unwanted changes in voltage in electrical circuits. They are made from insulating materials, usually plastic or ceramic. Capacitors are used in a wide variety of applications. They are used in computers, televisions, and audio equipment. They are used in lighting dimmers and in motor speed controls. Capacitors perform numerous other functions.

Electrolytic capacitor

An electrolytic capacitor is a two-electrode electrochemical device that stores energy in an electric field. The following article looks at a number of different electrolytic capacitors and the different uses each. An electrolytic capacitor is a type of capacitor that uses an electrolyte to achieve a larger capacitance than is possible with a dry capacitor.

The electrolyte is an ionic conducting liquid, which allows the capacitor to have very high capacitance. Electrolytic capacitors are used in high-voltage applications where a large capacitance is required.

Electrolytic capacitor


Silver Mica Capacitor (Types of Capacitors)

The silver mica capacitor is a surface mount capacitor. They are found in many electronic devices such as mobile phones and laptops. They are very small with sizes as small as 0402. They have good tolerance to temperature fluctuations and are perfect for high-frequency applications.

Silver Mica Capacitor

They are not so good at maintaining accurate values over time. The Silver Mica capacitor was the first electrolytic capacitor to be invented. It is considered by many to be the best capacitor to use when filtering a power supply.

A silver mica capacitor is a type of ceramic capacitor that is found in old radios and televisions from as far back as the 1920s. It is mainly used in the power supply circuit. Capacitors have a wide range of applications and are used for filtering, timing, and electric field.

Supercapacitors (Types of Capacitors)

Supercapacitors are an alternative to the traditional batteries used in commercial applications. They can be used in many ways and are starting to play a larger role in energy storage.

Supercapacitors diagram

Supercapacitors, in a nutshell, are energy storage devices that can be charged and discharged very quickly. They are ideal for supporting the charging requirements from large-scale installations and can be applied to support residential, service, and industrial purposes.

Polycarbonate capacitor

A polycarbonate capacitor is a solid electrolytic capacitor that works well in higher temperatures. There are a lot of polycarbonate capacitors available in the market. Polycarbonate capacitors are made pretty much of polycarbonate dielectric material and anode material. they are manufactured to be highly reliable. There is no doubt that polycarbonate capacitors are a better option than mica capacitors.

Polycarbonate capacitor and types of capacitors

Tantalum capacitor

Tantalum capacitors have been in use for years and are widely used in many types of electronics we use today, from mobile phones to laptops, and MP3 players to cordless phones. they provide a robust, stable, and long-life power source for many products.

Tantalum capacitor and Types of Capacitors


There are many types of capacitors, each with its own unique characteristics. The most common types are electrolytic, ceramic, and film capacitors.

Electrolytic capacitors are the most common type of capacitor. They are typically made from aluminum or tantalum and are filled with an electrolyte solution. Ceramic capacitors are made from a variety of materials, including barium titanate, strontium titanate, and titanium oxide.

They are typically smaller and have a higher capacitance than electrolytic capacitors. Film capacitors are made from a thin film of material, such as polyester, polypropylene, or metal oxide. They are typically used in high-voltage applications.

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