Use of high-voltage capacitors for pulse generation in pulsed electric field (PEF) technology

FTCAP high-voltage capacitors of the CX series make it possible to generate short electrical pulses for improved preservation and quality in food processing: The PEF systems of the Dutch company Pulsemaster use products from Mersen to supply the energy for generation of the pulses.

Film capacitors from Mersen deliver the energy for generating pulses in Pulsemaster PEF systems.

PEF systems from Pulsemaster treat foods with a series of electrical pulses. The energy needed is extracted from capacitors and delivered to the raw materials, such as potatoes, in a processing chamber. The capacitors from Mersen used in this process are an essential element of Pulsemaster PEF systems – if only because the required power of 90 MW cannot simply be obtained from an electrical outlet. The alternative to a power plant is provided by high-voltage capacitors, which function, so to speak, as batteries that are continuously charged. Capacitors can deliver extremely high currents for short periods to generate pulses.


The systems are equipped with FTCAP high-voltage capacitors of the CX series with a dielectric strength of 1100 volts. These very low-inductive film capacitors (<10.5nH) feature a self-sealing polypropylene dielectric, as well as a copper core and a surface milled capacitor base for excellent cooling. Two solid brass terminals, each with a diameter of 16 mm, ensure a high current carrying capacity. In addition, the complex internal structure of CX capacitors achieves an exceptionally low equivalent series inductance (ESL). That makes this capacitor a good choice for applications with high ripple frequencies or pulse discharges, as is the case with the Pulsemaster systems.