Dielectric Constant

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Dielectric Constant (symbol Missing Image:img src="SP7-d_files/epsilonsm.gif" ) </dt>
For a given substance, the ratio of the capacity of a condenser with that substance as dielectric to the capacity of the same condenser with a vacuum for dielectric. It is a measure, therefore, of the amount of electrical charge a given substance can withstand at a given electric field strength; it should not be confused with dielectric strength. </dd>
The dielectric constant Missing Image:img src="SP7-d_files/epsilonsm.gif" is a function of temperature and frequency and is written as a complex quantity

Missing Image:img src="SP7-d_files/80dies.gif" height="15" width="69"
where Missing Image:img src="SP7-d_files/epsilonsm.gif"' is the part that determines the displacement

current and Missing Image:img src="SP7-d_files/epsilonsm.gif" the dielectric absorption (see dielectric). For a nonabsorbing, nonmagnetic material Missing Image:img src="SP7-d_files/epsilonsm.gif"' is equal to the square of the index of refraction and the relation holds only at the particular frequency where these conditions apply. </dd>


This article is based on NASA's Dictionary of Technical Terms for Aerospace Use