(aka Condenser, cap)

An electronic (electrical) component that contains two conductors separated by a dielectric (insulating) compound. Since the conductors are insulated from each-other little-to-no current can pass between them. A static-electric field is created when there is a potential difference (see voltage) between them.

Note: An inductor uses magnetic fields, while a capacitor uses static electric fields. Both can "store" energy.

Common uses for capacitors:
Power Conditioning -
Filtering -
Power-Factor (PF) Correction - A capacitor wired in parallel to an inductive load used to 'correct' or 'compensate' for the inductance, and reduce impedance. This makes the end-load more resistive, not reactive. This allows large factories to reduce their power bills.
decoupling -
Starting Squirrel Cage Motors - These motors use a capacitor hooked up to an alternate 'starting winding' to get them going. The Capacitor causes a phase-lag in the secondary winding which is at an angle to the primary winding. This causes a rotating magnetic field to get the motor to start spinning. The primary winding is sufficient to keep the rotor turning.

Will continue working on later, feel free to contribute - Dionysus

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