High Voltage Pulse Forming Network (PFN) Capacitor

Period of Performance: 06/13/2014 - 12/09/2014


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

HARP Engineering LLC
3905 Varsity Dr. Array
Ann Arbor, MI 48103
Principal Investigator


Advanced pulsed power capacitors with energy densities of above 10 J/cc and high breakdown strength are required for the military of the future. While polymers such as BOPP and PET offer excellent loss characteristics, their low energy density has led to a search for alternative polymer dielectrics that can provide greater energy in a smaller package. Polyvinylidene fluoride and its co- and ter- polymers have shown potential to be used in high energy density applications, however these polymers are inefficient making them undesirable for most applications. The proposed SBIR will seek to develop high voltage pulse forming capacitors based on a new polymer dielectric developed at HARP Engineering. This new capacitor film has been shown in laboratory scale specimens to produce capacitors with unprecedented performance, reaching an energy density over 45 J/cc with greater than 90% efficiency, which is over 38 times higher performance than state of the art biaxially oriented polypropylene film capacitor. HARP Engineering will use our novel materials to provide the Army with a solution that minimizes the weight and volume of the capacitor. Our goal will be to significantly reduce the volume of current capacitors while offering matched discharge performance and lifetime of current BOPP capacitors.