6. Capacitors and Capacitance

Units or capacitance

It is necessary to be able to define the “size” of a capacitor. The capacitance of a capacitor is a measure of its ability to store charge, and the basic unit of capacitance is the Farad, named after Michael Faraday.

It is worth defining the Farad which is the basic unit of capacitance.

Capacitance: Farad definition:

A capacitor has a capacitance of one Farad when a potential difference of one volt will charge it with one coulomb of electricity (i.e. one Amp for one second).

A capacitor with a capacitance of one Farad is too large for most electronics applications, and components with much smaller values of capacitance are normally used. Three prefixes (multipliers) are used, µ (micro), n (nano) and p (pico):

µ10-6 (millionth)1000000µF = 1F
n10-9 (thousand-millionth)1000nF = 1µF
p10-12 (million-millionth)1000pF = 1nF

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *