Case Studies

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 Reasons for failure identified

The Problem

  • Violent rupture of case of main reservoir DC link capacitors supplying the traction inverters (1000V).
  • The released material caused signifi cant collateral damage to the main bus bar and to the associated traction inverter.
  • Similar failures had previously been investigated by the OEM, but the customer wanted an independent opinion; to understand the cause and whether any preventative measures could be taken.


Component technology and characteristics identified.

  • Typical failure modes examined against visual evidence of the failed capacitor.
  • Several hypotheses were proposed and examined.


  • Most likely reason for failure was identifi ed along with possible aggravating factors.
  • Recommendations given for further investigation, inspection and monitoring methods.

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