PSMA website
printing icon Click for easy-to-print version on 1 page
PSMA Capacitor Committee and IEEE PELS Capacitor Workshop

Everything You Wanted to Know About Capacitors But Were Afraid to Ask

Date: Saturday March 3, 2018
San Antonio, Texas

The PSMA Capacitor Committee and IEEE PELS will hold their first Capacitor Workshop on Saturday, March 3, 2018 - the day before and in the same venue as APEC 2018 at the Henry B. Gonzales Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas.

Capacitors are far more than just parallel plates. At this workshop industry leaders in capacitor technologies will showcase the details of design, construction, manufacturing, and most importantly applications of capacitors. The topics discussed will be of interest to any of the following:

DESIGNERS of electronic circuits
MANUFACTURERS of electronics and electrical equipment
MANAGERS of engineers, supply chain, purchasing

Workshop attendees can arrive to the meeting room between 7:00 and 8:00 AM for a buffet style breakfast, demonstrations, and informal discussions with their colleagues and peers. The demonstrations will also be available during the 2-hour buffet Lunch, and the Networking Session after the workshop. These Demonstrations are intended to be supportive of the Workshop material.


  • Ripple current effects on different capacitor technologies
  • DC Bias behavior of MLCCs
  • Push your filter design to success, comparison between different capacitor technologies
  • How capacitors e.g. MLCCs will be effected from mechanical stress like board flex
  • How self-healing works on film capacitors
  • How to use LTSpice simulations best
  • How to find the proper capacitor in online tools e.g. K-SIM
  • Comparison of capacitor technologies with online platforms e.g. REDEXPERT
  • Special table: How Virtual Reality helps to understand the components behavior? Have you ever asked yourself how to see the inside of a passive component easily? Let's dive into it in the virtual world.


The workshop will begin with a keynote presentation by Ralph Taylor of Delphi Technologies. The technical sessions will be divided into 3 primary sections: low voltage DC capacitor applications, high voltage AC & DC capacitor applications, and common capacitor failure modes.

The low voltage DC topics will feature a thirty-minute keynote presentation and five twenty-minute lecture style presentations concluding with a thirty-minute panel Q&A session. The tentative schedule for this session is as follows:

  • Ceramic Capacitors – Low Voltage DC, Wilmer Companioni, KEMET Electronics Corporation
  • Difference between traditional and polymer aluminum caps, Frank Puhane, Wurth Electronics
  • Recent Development on Supercapacitors, Nihal Kularatna, Waikato University New Zealand
  • Panel Discussion – Low Voltage, Companioni, Puhane, Kularatna

The AC & DC high voltage power topics will follow a similar format to the low voltage DC sessions with the following topics and speakers:

  • High Voltage Academic Input, Robert Pilawa, University of California, Berkeley
  • Ceramic Capacitors – High Voltage, Wilmer Companioni, KEMET Electronics Corporation
  • Film Capacitors – High Voltage, Scott Franco, CDE
  • Aluminum Capacitors – High Voltage, Pierre Lohrber, Wurth Electronics
  • Panel Discussion – High Voltage, Pilawa, Companioni, Franco, Lohrber

After the high Voltage Panel Discussion, a buffet lunch will be available with 2 hours allotted to allow everyone time to eat and visit the demonstrations of their choosing.

The final session will be a review of failure modes for all capacitors across the various technologies. Again, the discussions will be followed by a panel discussion

  • Recent Advances in Embedded Capacitors, Robert Grant Spurney, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Ceramic Capacitors – Failure Modes, Wilmer Companioni, KEMET Electronics Corporation
  • Film Capacitors – Failure Modes, Scott Franco, CDE
  • Aluminum Capacitors – Failure Modes, Stephan Menzel, Wurth Electronics
  • PELS Session: Failure Modes (Theoretical Input)
  • Panel Discussion – Failure Modes, Spurney, Companioni, Franco, Menzel, Wang

Following the third technical session there will be a networking hour. Wine, beer and hors d'oeuvres will be served from 5:00 to 6:00. There will be an additional opportunity to visit with the technology demonstration stations during this session.

At first glance, capacitors may not sound like the most exciting topic, but with the industry experts that will be presenting, everyone from experienced engineers to the eager engineering minds of tomorrow that are just about to graduate will find something useful in this workshop.

The early registration fee for the workshop is $325 per participant reducing to $225 for PSMA members, IEEE PELS members and students from an accredited university. After February 15, registration fee increases to $375 reduced to $275 for members and students. the Breakfast and lunch will be provided as part of the workshop. Electronic copies of all presentations will be made available to the workshop participants via a password protected website.

The latest information on agenda as well as registration information for the workshop will continue to be available on the PSMA website at:

Organizing Committee

Fred Weber, Future Technology Worldwide
Pierre Lohrber, Wurth Electronics
Wilmer Companioni, KEMET Electronics

<<-Contents | <-Previous | Page 5 | Next->

If you or anyone in your company is interested in getting on the distribution list for future issues of PSMA UPDATE, please send e-mail to: Be sure to include your name and the name of your company.