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Q.Temperature characteristics guide (1): Does the capacitance of an MLCC change with temperature?

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A. This characteristic of the MLCC is based on the class of the ceramic with which the dielectric is made. There are two main classes of ceramics used: class 1 and class 2.

Class 1 ceramics are non-ferroelectric ceramics based on titanium dioxide, also known as titania, (TiO2), and frequently contain strontium titanate (SrTiO3) and calcium titanate (CaTiO3) as additives. Because they are paraelectric (non-ferroelectric), these ceramics are very temperature stable. Additionally, class 1 ceramics do not change in capacitance when under a DC-bias, and show almost no loss in capacitance over time.

Class 2 ceramics are ferroelectric and are usually based on barium titanate (BaTiO3). Class 2 ceramics have significantly higher dielectric constants than class 1 ceramics. However, class 2 dielectric constants will fluctuate significantly with temperature, applied voltage, and over time. Their dielectric constants can vary significantly with temperature because the crystal structure of the ceramic will undergo phase changes within the operating temperature range of the MLCC. Class 2 ceramics also show a loss of capacitance when exposed to a DC electric field (DC-bias), and will exhibit a loss of capacitance over time (aging).


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