Browse Definitions :
Definition

dielectric constant

The dielectric constant is the ratio of the permittivity of a substance to the permittivity of free space. It is an expression of the extent to which a material concentrates electric flux, and is the electrical equivalent of relative magnetic permeability.

As the dielectric constant increases, the electric flux density increases, if all other factors remain unchanged. This enables objects of a given size, such as sets of metal plates, to hold their electric charge for long periods of time, and/or to hold large quantities of charge. Materials with high dielectric constants are useful in the manufacture of high-value capacitors.

A high dielectric constant, in and of itself, is not necessarily desirable. Generally, substances with high dielectric constants break down more easily when subjected to intense electric fields, than do materials with low dielectric constants. For example, dry air has a low dielectric constant, but it makes an excellent dielectric material for capacitors used in high-power radio-frequency (RF) transmitters. Even if air does undergo dielectric breakdown (a condition in which the dielectric suddenly begins to conduct current), the breakdown is not permanent. When the excessive electric field is removed, air returns to its normal dielectric state. Solid dielectric substances such as polyethylene or glass, however, can sustain permanent damage.

 

This was last updated in July 2015

Continue Reading About dielectric constant

SearchCompliance

  • information governance

    Information governance is a holistic approach to managing corporate information by implementing processes, roles, controls and ...

  • enterprise document management (EDM)

    Enterprise document management (EDM) is a strategy for overseeing an organization's paper and electronic documents so they can be...

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

SearchSecurity

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • risk mitigation

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • call tree

    A call tree is a layered hierarchical communication model that is used to notify specific individuals of an event and coordinate ...

  • Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)

    Disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) is the replication and hosting of physical or virtual servers by a third party to provide ...

SearchStorage

  • cloud storage

    Cloud storage is a service model in which data is transmitted and stored on remote storage systems, where it is maintained, ...

  • cloud testing

    Cloud testing is the process of using the cloud computing resources of a third-party service provider to test software ...

  • storage virtualization

    Storage virtualization is the pooling of physical storage from multiple storage devices into what appears to be a single storage ...

Close