Aluminum Electrolytic Capacitors Information

DescriptionAluminum Electrolytic Capacitor Information


Aluminum electrolytic capacitors use an electrolytic process to form the dielectric. Wet electrolytic capacitors have a moist electrolyte. Dry or solid electrolytic capacitors do not.




There are two basic configurations or form factors for aluminum electrolytic capacitors: leaded and surface mount.


Leaded capacitors have leads for connections to circuits. They use through hole technology (THT) to mounts component on a printed circuit board (PCB) by inserting component leads through holes in the board and then soldering the leads in place on the opposite side of the board.


Surface mount capacitors or chip capacitors do not have leads or use THT. Instead, SMT capacitors have a flat surface that is soldered to a flat pad on the face of the PCB.


There are also several different mounting styles including bolts, brackets, and poles.


Features and Specifications Aluminum Electrolytic Capacitor Information


Capacitance Type


Fixed capacitors have a nonadjustable capacitance value. With variable capacitors, specific capacitance values can be set via an adjustment mechanism, typically a potentiometer.


Product Features


In terms of features, some aluminum electrolytic capacitors are polarized or self-healing. Polarized capacitors can be safely operated with only one direct current (DC) polarity. Self-healing capacitors can withstand high-pulsed voltages without breaking the dielectric.


Aluminum electrolytic capacitors that meet military standards or comply with Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) are also available.


Package Specifications


With regard to packaging, leaded aluminum electrolytic capacitors may use any of the following:


  • Axial leads
  • Radial leads
  • Flying leads
  • Tab leads
  • Screw leads
  • Gull-wing leads
  • J-leads 

Performance Specifications


  • Capacitance range
  • Capacitance tolerance
  • DC rated voltage range (WVDC)
  • Leakage current
  • Equivalent series resistance (ESR)
  • Operating temperature 

Packing MethodsAluminum Electrolytic Capacitor Information


There are three basic packing methods for aluminum electrolytic capacitors.


Aluminum electrolytic capacitors that are packed in tape reel assemblies include a carrier tape with embossed cavities for storing individual components.


Electronic components that are packed in trays (rails) fit matrices of uniformly-spaced pockets.


Capacitors that are packed in shipping tubes use stick magazines that are made of rigid polyvinylchloride (PVC) and extruded in industry-standard sizes.




BS EN 60384-26-1 - Fixed capacitors for use in electronic equipment part 26-1: blank detail specification - fixed aluminum electrolytic capacitors with conductive polymer solid electrolyte - assessment level ez.

DSCC-DWG-01001 - Capacitors, fixed, electrolytic, polarized, aluminum oxide.
EIA-815 - Miniature aluminum electrolytic capacitor (leaded) qualification specification.




Image Credits:




Engineering Calculators Related to Aluminum Electrolytic Capacitors