Q&A Corner : Answer

How can I measure capacitance of ceramic capacitors?

Capacitance of ceramic capacitors is measured using measurement instruments such as a LCR meter (measurement principle is see below.) and an impedance analyzer.

In our company, the nominal capacitance of ceramic capacitors is measured under following conditions.
(Measurement conditions are also described on the reliability data page in the catalog. Catalogs are here.)

*1 The figures indicate typical specifications. Please refer to individual specifications in detail.
*2 Thermal treatment : Initial value shall be measured after test sample is heat-treated at 150+0/-10℃ for an hour and kept at room temperature for 24±2hours.
  Class 1 Class 2
Standard High Frequency Type C ≤ 10uF C > 10uF
Preconditioning None Thermal treatment (at 150℃ for 1hr) (*2)
Measuring frequency 1MHz±10% 1kHz±10% 120±10Hz
Measuring voltage (*1) 0.5 to 5Vrms 1±0.2Vrms 0.5±0.1Vrms
Bias application None

Note that capacitance changes by frequency, temperature, voltage and so on.

Please refer to individual specifications about measurement instruments and conditions of each product.
Please refer to this page about measurement instruments and conditions used to get characteristics on data sheet.

LCR meter (measurement principle)

The measurement method called "auto balancing bridge method" shown as the figure below is adopted to LCR meters by a lot of manufacturers of measurement instruments. In this method, the current at a measured object(=DUT) and a known resistance R is automatically adjusted to be same, that is the voltage at point A becomes 0. Then, LCR meter calculates complex impedance from the voltage applied to a DUT and a known resistance R. Capacitance of ceramic capaictors is derived from the reactance component of this complex impedance.

 Please refer to the manufacturers' web site in details.