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Miniature supercapacitor delivers extended lifetime, high power density, fast charging

High reliability at 105°C for energy storage in automotive electronic applications

KEMET announces its new high-performance supercapacitor for automotive electronics, FMU Series. This series delivers 1,000 hours at 85°C/85% RH-rated voltage and is industry-leading in the market with operational temperature ranging from -40°C to 105°C. These supercapacitors are qualified to an automotive testing protocol. These capacitors are manufactured in an ISO TS 16949 certified plant and are subjected to PPAP/PSW and change control. They are ideal for automotive applications needing a main power system backup during a power loss, such as ADAS, autonomous vehicles, and central gateway ECUs. Supercapacitors are ideal for maintaining the main power system’s real-time clock or volatile memory when it is removed, such as during a power failure or when the main power system’s battery has been removed for replacement. Additionally, these supercapacitors offer power backup in equipment ranging from IoT devices, smart meters, medical devices, and industrial computing. 

Using supercapacitors for automotive electronics enables freedom from the design limits imposed by finite battery lifetimes. The supercapacitor’s benign open-circuit failure mode contrasts with typical short-circuit battery failures that may result in outgassing or ignition. Furthermore, supercapacitors are a cost-effective alternative to small backup batteries. Depending on the type of load and current demand, they can store enough energy to provide backup for durations ranging from a few seconds to several hours.

KEMET’s miniature supercapacitors use a proprietary aqueous electrolyte solution that provides high durability against liquid leakage, vibrations, and thermal shock, thus high reliability in harsh environments. Aqueous electrolytes are highly conductive, have a low environmental impact, and are non-toxic and non-flammable. Unlike a battery, supercapacitors store and release energy quickly through physical adsorption and the ions desorption in the electrolyte between its electrodes. With the supercapacitor’s low internal resistance, these devices can fully charge within a few seconds. In contrast, a secondary battery cell can take from ten minutes to several hours to fully charge. Moreover, there is no theoretical limit to the life cycle, whereas a lithium-ion secondary cell has a finite lifetime of about 500 cycles. They also typically have a greater resistance to moisture absorption than organic compounds, resulting in a longer life with better stability.

This time, KEMET improved the electrolyte with the existing aqueous technology and have realised to get the world’s first Supercapacitor with heat resistance of 105°C. According to a Markets and Research report, the global supercapacitor market generated $4.4 billion in 20222 and is estimated to reach $15.2 billion by 2028, with a CAGR of 22.95% from 2022 to 2028*. An increase in demand for electric automotive applications, energy-efficient equipment for solar and wind power system, and increased use in monitoring and stabilising for industrial applications is boosting the growth of the global supercapacitor market. 

* Source: Supercapacitor Market: Global Industry Trends, Share, Size, Growth, Opportunity and Forecast 2023-2028: Global Opportunity Analysis and Industry Forecast, 2020–2027.

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