Variable capacitor and discharge question? Answered
I don't have a variable capacitor of my own to test this so I am relying on the instructable community.
What if you have a variable capacitor tuned so that it is at its maximum capacitance and then charge it in a circuit for 5 tau (essentially full charge). Then you completely removed it from any circuit so that you only had a variable capacitor with two (short) leads not connected to anything. Lastly, you turned the tuning knob so that the capacitor had less capacitance all the way to essentially 0 farads.
What happens to the stored energy?