3D Capacitor Models with CapacitorEdge’s Latest Button: 3D STEP

Radina Dikova

Tuesday, May 10th, 2016

KEMET capacitor 3D Model

KEMET’s component datasheets contain images and mechanical information about our components. If you open the PDF in Adobe’s Acrobat Viewer, you can even see rotatable 3D models. This unique feature leads many customers to ask for a capacitor 3D model they can download and use in their CAD program. The new search engine on KEMET.com, ComponentEdge, now has a new beta feature: downloadable STEP files.

We are always designing capacitors to pack the most capacitance into the smallest area possible. While our parts have standard footprints or hole patterns, their cases’ width, length, and height can vary by part number. Of course, this data is available in our spec sheets (C1206C104K9RAC) in numeric formats.

Instead of offering a generic ceramic 1206 3D model, we chose to offer part number-specific STEP/STP files. These 3D capacitor models build from the same data found in our datasheets. None of the files are generic 3D capacitor models. The 3D capacitor model for a C1206C104KARAC is different than a C1206C104K9RAC, even though they both have a standard 1206 footprint.

What KEMET 3D Models Are Available?

KEMET’s part number database contains over five million unique part numbers. In total, we have about 400 different product families. We do not have a 3D capacitor model for every part number, but we do have a plan. Starting today, we turned on a beta feature in ComponentEdge. When a 3D model is available, ComponentEdge will automatically display a button for downloading.

Currently, files for all of our surface mount aluminum, ceramic, and tantalum components, and radial through-hole film capacitors are available. Over the next couple of months, we will be adding our other through-hole and non-capacitor products. If you want to know when the work is complete, please subscribe to the Engineering Center Newsletter found below.

Where to Download a KEMET Capacitor 3D Model

Having a 3D capacitor model is one thing. Making it easy to find is another. Quickly obtaining the correct model is critical to making components easier to design in. KEMET’s part search, ComponentEdge, our re-designed search engine. It can perform cross references, search on some distributor’s part numbers, provide spec sheets, and links to other information such as RoHS status.

compedgestp

Now there is a button to download a 3D STEP file containing a part number specific capacitor 3D model. Search results with the button above currently have a model available, while the results without one do not.

The button downloads a file with the naming format of “PART_NUMBER.STP.” We are looking at methods to offer a a method to bulk download these files. If you are interested, please contact us so that we can discuss those options.

KEMET STEP File Examples

Ceramic Capacitor Stacks (3D Capacitor Model)

If you are curious to see what a KEMET capacitor STEP file looks like but don’t have a part number on hand, then here are some examples:

Background on STEP Files

STEP, or STP, is a standard file format used by CAD programs to exchange 3D information. We often hear from customers that if they have a STEP file of a component, they can create a 3D model of their finished product. STEP is an acronym for Standard for the Exchange of Product model data, which is also known as ISO 10303.

We picked the widely used STEP format for our capacitor 3D model files. Let us know if there is another format that might be more usable in your workflow. We can’t accommodate all of them, but we certainly welcome your feedback.

Viewing STEP Files

If you don’t have a CAD program but still want to see what a 3D KEMET capacitor model looks like, one free tool you can use is FreeCAD. This software is a multi-platform open source project. FreeCAD is under heavy development, so isn’t suggested for production work. However, I have found you can easily rotate and view STEP files as well as export to a few other formats.

Ask An FAE on 3D STEP Files