Niobium Oxide Capacitors

This Product Selection Guide contains information to help select products in the Niobium Oxide Capacitors category on

Niobium oxide capacitors are an electrolytic (polarized) capacitor type incorporating oxides of niobium as anode and dielectric materials, with a manganese oxide cathode system. Developed in response to a tantalum shortage, their properties and behaviors are similar to conventional Ta-MnO2 capacitors, with a narrower range of available capacitance and voltage values and a greatly reduced likelihood of device failure resulting in failure by ignition.


Capacitance: A measurement of the device’s ability to store an electrical charge. It is measured in Farads (F) and uses the metric system for values.

Tolerance: Characterizes the extent of permitted variability of overall device value among samples of a given part number, resulting from variations in manufacturing.

Voltage - Rated: Typically this represents the maximum voltage rating to which a device will meet its given specifications. Exceeding this voltage rating may damage the device and other system components.

ESR (Equivalent Series Resistance): The ESR of Electrolytic capacitors is an important factor to consider in circuits where current levels are relatively high. Also under some circumstances, the current sourced from them needs to have a low source impedance, for example: when the capacitor is being used in a power supply circuit as a reservoir capacitor. Under these conditions, it is necessary to consult the manufacturer’s data sheets to discover whether the electrolytic capacitor chosen will meet the requirements for the circuit. If the ESR is high, then it will not be able to deliver the required amount of current in the circuit without a voltage drop resulting from the ESR which will be seen as a source resistance.

Current - Leakage: Maximum DC current flow through the device. Usually measured at maximum rated operating voltage and temperature, both of which strongly influence actual observed values.

Dissipation Factor: Characterizes losses/power dissipation within the device, observed values will vary significantly depending on test conditions.

Package / Case: Indicates the type of protective case used on an electronic component to allow easy handling, installation, and protection. This selection was determined to be the closest industry standard applicable to the supplier’s device packaging. Typically it is best to check the actual dimensions from the datasheet rather than depend on this terminology when designing your circuit.

Manufacturer Size Code: The manufacturer’s designator for a device’s physical package/form factor. May have inconsistent meanings across manufacturers or product series.

Height - Seated (Max): Indicates how far the device will extend above the surface to which it has been attached.

Features: These are different capabilities or properties of the device such as low ESR.

Operating Temperature: Recommended operating temperature, typically given in a range or as a maximum. Exceeding these temperatures may affect performance or damage the device and other system components.

Supplier Device Package: This is what the manufacturer calls the package of this device. They are manufacturer specific. It is typically best to use the actual dimensions from the datasheets rather than to go by this terminology when designing your circuit.

Size / Dimension: The physical dimensions of the main body of the device. Typically listed as length x width.



DIGIKEY PART # 478-5851-2-ND - Tape & Reel (TR)
DESCRIPTION 15 µF Niobium Oxide Capacitor 6.3 V 1206 (3216 Metric) 2 Ohms



Schematic symbol courtesy of Scheme-it. Please see their website for more information and symbols.


What Is a Capacitor and What Are the Different Types?
Fundamentals: Understand the Characteristics of Capacitor Types to Use Them Appropriately and Safely

Niobium Oxide Capacitors

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