Film capacitor use a thin plastic film as a dielectric. The film of this capacitor is made extremely thin, generally with the thickness under 1 µm through a sophisticated film drawing process. Once manufactured, the film is either metallized or left untreated depending on the application. The structure is further completed by the addition of electrodes after which the entire assembly is mounted into a case for the protection from certain environmental factors. Film capacitors are not polarized and therefore are largely preferred for AC signal and power use. Typical film capacitors have capacitances ranging from below 1nF to 30µF. They can retain these high precision values for a longer period of time as compared to other capacitors. Owing to this, their aging process is relatively slower than other capacitors including electrolytic capacitor. Thus, low average failure rate results in long shelf and service life and high reliability.
Furthermore, film capacitors have low equivalent series resistance and low self-inductance which leads to low power dissipation. Also, they can be manufactured in voltage ratings as low as 50V, up to above 2kV. They provide high surge current pulses while withstanding voltages in the kilovolt range. Owing to these factors, they are largely used in conventional applications such as audio crossover, filter, etc. as a voltage smoothing capacitor. Similarly, they are also preferred in high-vibration automotive environments, high temperature environments and high-power applications. Among all film capacitor types, power film capacitors are expected to find higher future opportunities owing to applications such as phase shifters, pulsed lasers, etc.
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Film capacitor is a common capacitor type in electronic devices. Growing sales of consumer electronic devices across the world is directly driving the film capacitor market. However, film capacitors are comparatively bulkier than electrolytic capacitors. Owing to this, there is limited surface mount technology packages available into the market. Also, similar to other capacitors, this capacitor type can burst into flames if overloaded. In spite of these restraints, film capacitor market is expected to represent high growth owing to its advantages such as high efficiency, low losses, and long service life.
The global film capacitor market can be classified on the basis of film type, technology, application, end-use industry, and geography. Based on film type, the film capacitor market can be segmented into dielectric film, metallized plastic film and hybrid. The hybrid type is constructed using a combination of metal foils and metallized plastic films. The dielectric film type can be further segmented into Polyethylene terephthalate (PET), Polypropylene (PP), and Polyethylene Naphthalate (PEN). Similarly, metallized plastic film capacitors can be further classified into Metallized Polyester Capacitors (MKT), Metallized Polypropylene Capacitors (MKP), and Metallized Polypropylene Naphthalate. On the basis of technology, the market can be bifurcated into wound and stacked-film technology. Based on application, the film capacitor market can be segmented into AC and DC applications.
In terms of end-use industry, the film capacitor market can be segmented into power & utilities, consumer electronics, automotive, government, aerospace & defense, telecommunication, and others. Based on geography, the film capacitor market can be segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific (APAC), Middle East & Africa (MEA), and South America. Asia Pacific is expected to be the most attractive region for the film capacitor market owing to rapidly expanding end-user industrial base in developing nations such as China and India in this region.
Prominent players operating in the film capacitor market include Cornell Dubilier Electronics, Inc., KEMET Electronics Corporation, Nichicon Corporation, Panasonic Corporation, TDK Corporation, Xiamen Faratronic Co., Ltd., AVX Corporation, Hitachi Chemical Company, Ltd., iCeL Systems, Inc., Shanghai Yinyan Advertising Co., Ltd., Suntan Capacitors, Ltd., Vishay Intertechnology, Inc., and WIMA S.A., among others.
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