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Tantalum caps - how long is the shelf life?

Discussion in 'Hobby Electronics' started by Alan Rutlidge, Sep 6, 2006.

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  1. Just wondering if any here have any personal experiences or useful
    information about the shelf life of tantalum capacitors, specifically resin
    dipped types. Had quite a few (maybe 20 years old) NOS go s/c when
    subjected to approximately 60% of the rated d.c. voltage.
    Have they deteriorated over time or could they just be from a bad batch?
    Unfortunately I don't know who the manufacturer was as there are no brand
    markings. Just deep orange in colour.

  2. Mark Harriss

    Mark Harriss Guest

    Yep they just die with age, no bad batches needed. There are modern
    low leakage electrolytics that can directly replace them for most
    apps, they at least can dry out and go open circuit.
  3. Ross Herbert

    Ross Herbert Guest

    I don't have any experience with long term storage of solid tantalums
    but here is what Vishay say in their FAQ sheet.

    Q. What are the recommended storage conditions for solid tantalum
    A. Vishay recommends that solid tantalum capacitors be vacuum-sealed
    with desiccant tape and reels be stored at 40 °C with 65% relative

    I haven't found any info about what may happen if these conditions are
    not used but the high storage temperature in a vacuum seal seems to
    suggest that they readily absorb moisture. It is not hard to imagine
    how they might react when put to use after 20 years storage if they
    have absorbed moisture.
  4. Ross Herbert

    Ross Herbert Guest

    I meant the loose capacitors must be stored in a vacuum seal container
    with dessicant while tape and reels must be stored at 40 deg C at
    specified humidity.
  5. jasen

    jasen Guest


    dessicant tape and 65% relative humidity seem contradictory.

  6. Borat

    Borat Guest

    Pretty sure they're separate:
    "I meant the loose capacitors must be stored in a vacuum seal container with
    dessicant" ===while==== "tape and reels must be stored at 40 deg C at
    specified humidity".
  7. Ross Herbert

    Ross Herbert Guest

    Exactly. The inclusion of the word "while" separates the storage
    requirements for the loose items and the tape-and-reel components.
  8. Hi Guys,

    Thanks for your valuable comments and contribution to the thread.

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