From: Chuck Simmons
Organization: You jest.
X-Mailer: Mozilla 4.61 [en] (X11; U; Linux 2.0.33 i586)
Subject: Re: Explosions in electronics.
Date: Sat, 28 Sep 2002 19:19:18 GMT
NNTP-Posting-Date: Sat, 28 Sep 2002 12:19:18 PDT
Ian Stirling wrote:
> Kevin Aylward wrote:
> > "Ian Stirling" wrote in message
> > news:firstname.lastname@example.org...
> >> Uwe Zimmermann wrote:
> >> >
> >> > most probably you either connected the capacitor with reversed
> >> > polarity or wrong voltage rating. Electrolytic capacitors
> > essentially
> >> > work as reverse biased diodes. If you connect them with reversed
> >> > polarity, current can pass through and (a) dissipate heat and (b)
> >> > start electrolysis of the electrolyte, releasing gas.
> >> > The same happens if you exceed the maximum voltage rating.
> >> I know I connected it backwards, as I found the epoxy red plug
> > connected
> >> to the wrong terminal.
> >> I suppose it must just be electrolytic gas generation, I was just
> >> surprised that the case seems to have fragmented, rather than simply
> >> blown out the plug.
> > Ahmmm. Well, you obviously didn't play much with electronics stuff when
> > you were a kid.
> Sure I did, I've just never seen the failure mode where the case disintegrates,
> they all seem to 'just' blow out the base/contents, leaving the can intact.
Back in about 1970, I had an engineering student working for me as a
technician. At the time, I ran a general electronic services shop for
the physics department of a university so the student worked for me at
essentially slave rates. This particular student had a particularly
large complement of thumbs. About ten. On each hand! It was largely due
to his efforts that we made the astounding discovery of SASEF in my lab
(SASEF is Smoke Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Fire). Other
discoveries we made were definite identification of a particle emission
region in the characteristic curves of most semiconductors and methods
for high velocity launch of electrolytic capacitors.
Over the years I ran the shop, I had several student technicians but the
one above was by far the most entertaining if nothing else.
... The times have been,
That, when the brains were out,
the man would die. ... Macbeth
Chuck Simmons email@example.com