Ultracapacitors 101: What Do Those Words We’re Using Even Mean?

Now that we’ve discussed the mechanics of an ultracapacitor, providing an overview of how the technology works, we thought it would be helpful to create a glossary of key terms in the ultracapacitor space. Understanding the technology helps, but you won’t be able to compare products without a clear understanding of the related terminology.

Check out the definitions of must-know ultracapactior terms below and tweet us @ioxus with your questions. Don’t forget to also let us know what you think of this series and offer suggestions for other topics.

“Electric Double Layer Capacitor” Or “Supercapacitor”: simply other terms for ultracapacitor. Recall from our previous post that ultracapacitors differ from capacitors due to the fact that they are coated in activated carbon. The coating results in each electrode having two layers of charge on its surface, which explains the “double layer” description.

Capacitance: a key metric when sizing a capacitor system, capacitance is the measurement of the device’s ability to store an electric charge and is generally measured in Farads (see Farad).

Farad: the unit of measurement for capacitance. In precise terms, a Farad is the unit of charge a capacitor will accept for the potential across it to change 1 volt. (1 Farad = 1 Coulomb/Volt)

Surface Area: capacitance is directly proportional to surface area. The activated carbon coating discussed above increases the surface area of an ultracapacitor 10,000 to 100,000 times that of a simple metal sheet, thus increasing capacitance significantly.

Voltage: the electrical potential difference between two points. In simpler terms, the voltage is the total amount of energy required to move a charge divided by the magnitude of the charge. There are several voltage measurements associated with ultracapacitors:
• Voltage refers to the maximum operating voltage for an individual ultracapacitor
• Rated voltage indicates the voltage at which all performance testing was conducted
• Surge voltage is the maximum voltage that an ultracapacitor can operate at for a few seconds without causing damage or cells to open

Please be sure to check out our blog next week, where we continue to provide the definition of terms for the ultracapacitor technology.

Latest News

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    Ioxus, designers and manufacturers of smart power solutions based on its widely used ultracapacitor technology, today announced that it was named a Bronze winner in the Engine Enhancement category of the 2018 Edison Awards. The announcement was made at the Edison Awards Gala in New York City.

    “We are very proud to have received an internationally recognized Edison Award and to be named a winner alongside companies like Mazda Motor Corporation and CFM International, a joint company of GE and Safran Group, for our engine enhancement achievements,” said Mark McGough, CEO and president of Ioxus, Inc. “This award is recognition that uSTART is proving highly reliable and valuable for fleets in the trucking industry. Being recognized with an Edison Award is one of the highest accolades we can receive in the name of innovation.”

    Inspired by Thomas Edison’s persistence and inventiveness, the Edison Awards are judged by a panel of more than 3,000 leading business executives, including past award winners, academics and leaders in the fields of product development, design and engineering. The judges recognize products as true innovations in their category.

    In addition to the Awards Gala, the annual Edison Awards program encompassed a full-day, “Meet the Innovators Forum” and the, “Innovators’ Showcase,” which offered guests a hands-on experience with read more...

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