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In modern technology, tantalum capacitors are highly sought after due to their long-term stability and low leakage current. Conveniently small in size, these reliable capacitors are typically used in computer or smartphone motherboards – but are also frequently used in medical and military electronics. The rate at which tantalum capacitors are currently needed is beginning to surpass the capacity manufacturers can deliver, leading to a massive shortage we expect to see by the end of 2020.
Reasons for the upcoming shortage include:

– Prices were planned to increase at the same rate that needs – specifically within aerospace – suddenly increased as well, creating a shortage on tantalum capacitors
– Mobile computing and smartphones require hundreds of thousands of these tiny capacitors to filter power supply
– Medical electronics are advancing and innovating faster than ever, with demand for reliable capacitors continuing to rise

Additionally, the current, well-known shortage of multi-layer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs) due to the rise in demand for portable technology and automotive advancements has exasperated the decline in availability of tantalum capacitors, as this is a common alternative for MLCCs. Tantalum capacitors also have a higher capacity per volume than MLCCs, making them a popular choice for a vast variety of uses and industries.

Global demand is rising and inventory is diminishing quickly; therefore, price increases and long lead times will be inevitable. Thankfully, if your project requires tantalum capacitors and you’re concerned about an upcoming shortage, you do still have options – but should consider purchasing them now as demand will only increase. At Direct Components, we currently have tantalum capacitors and MLCC available both in our inventory and through our global surplus supply chain. Now is the time to stock up and ensure you have the tantalum capacitors you need to ensure your project’s future success.

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