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Asian Journal of Research and Reviews in Physics, ..,Vol.: 1, Issue.: 3


A New Look at Formulation of Charge Storage in Capacitors and Application to Classical Capacitor and Fractional Capacitor Theory


Shantanu Das1,2*

1Reactor Control System Design Section (E & I Group), BARC, Mumbai-400085, India.

2Condensed Matter Physics Research Centre – CMPRC, Department of Physics, Jadavpur University, Kolkata-700032, West Bengal, India.

Article Information


(1) Dr. Khalil Kassmi, Professor, Department of Physics, Mohamed Premier University, Morocco.


(1) Francisco Gómez, National Autonomous University of Mexico, México.

(2) Subramaniam Jahanadan, Labuan Matriculation College, Malaysia.

(3) J. A. Tenreiro Machado, Polytechnic of Porto, Portugal.

(4) Noriah Bidin, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Malaysia.

Complete Peer review History: http://www.sciencedomain.org/review-history/26191


In this study, we revisit the concept of classical capacitor theory-and derive possible new explanations of the definition charge stored in a capacitor. We introduce the capacity function with respect to time to describe the charge storage in a classical capacitor and a fractional capacitor. Here we will describe that charge stored at any time in a capacitor as ‘convolution integral’ of defined capacity function of a capacitor and voltage stress across it which comes from causality principle. This approach, however, is different from the conventional method, where we multiply the capacity and voltage functions to obtain charge stored. This new concept is in line with the observation of charge stored as a step function and the relaxation current in form of impulse function for ‘ideal geometrical capacitor’ of constant capacity; when an uncharged capacitor is impressed with a constant voltage stress.  Also this new formulation is valid for a power-law decay current that is given by ‘universal dielectric relaxation law’ called as ‘Curie von-Schweidler law’, when an uncharged capacitor is impressed with a constant voltage stress. This universal dielectric relaxation law gives rise to fractional derivative relating voltage stress and relaxation current that is formulation of ‘fractional capacitor’. A ‘fractional capacitor’ we will discuss with this new concept of redefining the charge store definition i.e. via this ‘convolution integral’ approach, and obtain the loss tangent value. We will also show how for a ‘fractional capacitor’ by use of ‘fractional integration’ we can convert the fractional capacity a constant that is in terms of fractional units (Farads per sec to the power of fractional number); to normal units of Farads. From the defined capacity function, we will also derive integrated capacity of capacitor. We will also give a possible physical explanation by taking example of porous and non-porous pitchers of constant volume holding water and thus, explaining the various interesting aspects of classical capacitor and a fractional capacitor that we arrive with this new formulation; and also relates to a capacitor breakdown theory-due to electrostatic forces.

Keywords :

Causality; convolution integral; fractional derivative; fractional integration; Curie-von Schweidler law; fractional capacitor; geometric capacity; time varying capacity function; integrated capacity; loss tangent.

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