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Electronic Formulas / Formulae

Voltage Division by Series Capacitances
Formula Calculation

When a total voltage ES is applied to series connected capacitances C1 and C2, the charge QS which accumulates in the series circuit is:

QS = ˛iSdt = ESCS = ESC1C2 / (C1 + C2)

The voltages V1 and V2 which appear across the respective capacitances C1 and C2 are:

V1 = ˛iSdt / C1 = ESCS / C1 = ESC2 / (C1 + C2)

V2 = ˛iSdt / C2 = ESCS / C2 = ESC1 / (C1 + C2)

In general terms, for capacitances C1, C2, C3, ... connected in series:

QS = ˛iSdt = ESCS = ES / (1 / CS) = ES / (1 / C1 + 1 / C2 + 1 / C3 + ...)

Vn = ˛iSdt / Cn = ESCS / Cn = ES / Cn(1 / CS) = ES / Cn(1 / C1 + 1 / C2 + 1 / C3 + ...)

Note that the highest voltage appears across the lowest capacitance.

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