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'[EE] make your own modern capacitor...'
2007\12\29@010523 by William \Chops\ Westfield

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I mentioned this over in Russell's battery thread, but...

Is it within the reach of "amateur science" to make your
own electrolytic or supercapacitor?  An electrolytic is
more-or-less anodized aluminum foil with a slightly exotic
electrolyte, and the early supercapacitors were based on
activated charcoal (which is somewhat available and I think
even almost home-manufacturable, for somewhat poor values
of "activated.")

BillW

2007\12\30@074246 by Peter P.

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William "Chops" Westfield <westfw <at> mac.com> writes:
> Is it within the reach of "amateur science" to make your
> own electrolytic or supercapacitor?  An electrolytic is

I think that it can be done but the problem is service life. The exotic
substances used in electrolytics mostly have to do with longevity in service and
storability. F.ex. Phosphoric acid is used because it modifies the surface
tension so the electrolyte won't flow out of the separators when stored among
other things. Also the achievable capacitance density by volume may be very low.
E.g. something like 1930s technology: 1 inch dia. 3 inches high maybe 20-40uF.
'Homemade' Leyden bottle style capacitors are alwasy fairly good and with todays
styro and pvc cups some really powerful designs can be tried.

Anyway rolled foil electrode capacitors are self-made by the high voltage crowd
with good success. An electrolytic can also be built like that. As electrolyte I
think that distilled water with some weak acid in it (phosphoric or boric or
even citric or acetic!) may work great, after the plates are formed with a
mordant electrolyte.

But why would you want to build your own ?

Peter P.


2007\12\31@230556 by Tsu Do Nimh

picon face
s/build/roll/

:)

C.


On 12/30/07, Peter P. <spam_OUTplpeter2006TakeThisOuTspamyahoo.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -


'[EE] make your own modern capacitor...'
2008\01\01@045948 by Apptech
face
flavicon
face
> Is it within the reach of "amateur science" to make your
> own electrolytic or supercapacitor?  An electrolytic is
> more-or-less anodized aluminum foil with a slightly exotic
> electrolyte, and the early supercapacitors were based on
> activated charcoal (which is somewhat available and I
> think
> even almost home-manufacturable, for somewhat poor values
> of "activated.")

You could probably build a large capacity Tantalum capacitor
from scratch.
Several of these steps would require investigation but all
should be within home-builder reach.

- Take Tantalum powder.
- Build a "ball" around an electrode and press into a
tightly packed mass and then sinter so that all the powder
forms a mechanical whole.
- Electrically form a thin oxide insulating layer on the
surface.
- Add an outer conducting layer.
- Add an outer connection and hey presto - a Tantalum
capacitor with a vast surface area, due to the sintered
powder, and a very low inter electrode spacing due to the
oxide separator.

Whether a tantalum capacitor is considered "modern" may be
moot :-).

       Russell



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