[Mgs] MGA sputtering engine and bad replacement parts

Barney Gaylord barneymg at mgaguru.com
Sat Nov 28 14:22:18 MST 2009

At 12:16 PM 11/28/2009 -0600, The Roxter wrote:
>I have always wondered why we call a capacitor a "condenser" just 
>because it's on a car.

Ah, history time.  The term "condenser" is not unique to automobiles 
use.  The device was originally called a condenser long before it 
became known as a capacitor.

According to Wikipedia, "The term [condenser] was first used for this 
purpose by Alessandro Volta in 1782, with reference to the device's 
ability to store a higher density of electric charge than a normal 
isolated conductor".  Apparently Wikipedia is wrong, and that was not 
the first use of the term (or the original concept).

See here: http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa3726/is_200506/ai_n13643083/
The term "condenser" was earlier applied to application of the Leyden 
Jar (invented 1745), used to collect and store an electrical charge, 
assumed at the time to be a condensed fluid.  For the next two 
centuries, devices used to retain electrical charges were called 
condensers [and sometimes still are].

More recently the device came to be called "capacitor" when it became 
easier to calculate the actual capacity of the device to store 
electrical charge, and devices were invented that had the capacity to 
store much larger charges.  Now lets see if someone can find the date 
of first use of the term "capacitor" for this device.

Incidentally, there is one electrical condenser that is definitely 
not a capacitor, the synchronous condenser (more like an electric 
motor with no output shaft).

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