How to address sustainability issues while taking care of business

James Lewis

Tuesday, June 21st, 2016

KEMET Conflict Free Tantalum (Banner)

Rapid advances in electronics can be attributed in part the outstanding performance of tantalum capacitors. The unbeatable high volumetric efficiency drove aggressive miniaturization while low noise and stability empowered relentless progress towards higher data rates and lower supply voltages.

As the technology matured and suppliers consolidated, materials shortages slowed adoption. Improvements in ceramic, electrolytic and polymer film capacitors saw these devices become credible alternatives. Legislation aimed at preventing conflict minerals entering the supply chain have potentially closed off the advantages of tantalum technology and challenged manufacturers to verify that the tantalum in their capacitors is from conflict-free sources.

KEMET addressed issues in the supply of raw materials and capacitor production, while at the same time developing advanced technologies to deliver even more capable and compelling products for customers. These initiatives have introduced sustainability alongside the unparalleled combination of superior energy density, high stability, outstanding electrical performance and self-healing capability.

Partnership for Social and Economic Sustainability

KEMET’s “Partnership for Social and Economic Sustainability” initiative is a highly important aspect of the company’s work aimed at ensuring a reliable source of audited conflict-free tantalum. This initiative is a benchmark for the industry.

KEMET is working closely with a certified conflict-free mine in DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo); the company also supports projects in the local community to help establish a path to self-sufficiency. The policies at the mine have been implemented in conjunction with experienced partners and follow known best practices. These ensure proper recording of mined coltan (tantalum ore), fair-trading that rewards workers’ productivity, and the safest possible working conditions for the miners.

Completing the supply chain, KEMET has acquired and built operations capable of performing the post-mining processes to produce capacitor-grade tantalum powder and pure tantalum wire. These groups feed KEMET’s capacitor factories, creating the only vertically integrated supply chain, giving unrivaled control over supply, quality and pricing of raw materials and finished capacitors. Our supply chain is compliant with the new conflict minerals legislation now in force. KEMET recorded the industry’s first successful filing under the Dodd-Frank law in June 2014.

By addressing sustainability issues, KEMET has ensured the market has a reliable source for high-quality, high-performance tantalum capacitors for years to come. Check out this page for information on .