Lighting Capacitors

Written by Dina Kayed
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A lighting capacitor is a device used to store a temporary charge of electricity. It consists of two metallic plates insulated from each other by a non-conducting substance. Capacitors are used in fluorescent lights and discharge light fixtures. Capacitors are more prone to failure than power cords and need replacement more frequently. The farad is a unit of capacitance and was the achievement of Michael Faraday's long experiments with capacitors. The first capacitor ever developed was in 1936.

Use of Lighting Capacitors

There are different types of lighting capacitors such as multi-layer ceramic, film, and aluminum electrolytic capacitors. Film capacitors are a good choice if you're looking for small capacitors with a large voltage. They are very reliable and their level of capacitance does not change much with temperature fluctuations.

Some capacitors are self-healing. In other words, they have the ability to remove the short circuit simply by vaporizing the defect. The capacitor should be matched to light fixtures according to the light fixture size, voltage and period of use. If you wish to increase charge storage you can simply use a parallel capacitor. If more than one capacitor is joined together, their combined capacitance creates a stronger and more durable unit.

Capacitors can be charged simply by hooking them up to a circuit that's not of stronger voltage. If greater capacitance is needed, a larger plate area should be installed. If the space between the plates is too large, it will decrease the capacity. The smaller the space is, the better.


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