Measurement tips for high capacitance MLCCs (Multilayer Ceramic Capacitors) (2): What voltage and frequency should I apply to the capacitor?
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A. MLCC capacitors > 10μF are considered high capacitance. Improvements in manufacturing technology have allowed ceramic capacitor manufacturers to build higher capacitance parts approaching tantalum and electrolytic values. These “high value” MLCC’s are specified under the same conditions as tantalum capacitors. The measurement voltage should be 0.5 Vrms and measurement frequency should be 120Hz. The following table summarizes the measurement conditions.

Capacitance AC Voltage Frequency
C ≤ 1000pF 1.0 &plusmn 0.2 Vrms 1MHz &plusmn 10%
1000pF < C ≤10μF 1.0 &plusmn 0.2 Vrms 1kHz &plusmn 10%
C > 10μF 0.5 &plusmn 0.2 Vrms 120 Hz &plusmn 10%
Table 1: Measurement Conditions per TDK general specification.

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