Symmetrical Design for Polarized Capacitor
Original Publication Date: 1978-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-21
Tantalum capacitors are primarily used on card-planar printed wiring carriers for voltage decoupling and are polarized (+,-). If the capacitor is assembled wrong, i.e., 180 degree rotated insertion, when power is applied, the tantalum will break down, causing more and more current to be drawn. The increasing current generates heat to the point that the capacitor bursts into flames and/or explodes. The current is drawn from the card power plane through the plated through hole and up through the component lead which causes the excess heating, burning, etc.