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Electronics Components

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Electronics Projects: Charging and Discharging a Capacitor

One of the most common uses for capacitors in an electronic circuit is to store a charge that you can discharge when it's needed. Project 3-1 presents a simple construction project on a solderless breadboard [more…]

Electronics Projects: Block DC while Passing AC

One of the important features of capacitors in electronics circuits is their ability to block direct current while allowing alternating current to pass. [more…]

Electronics Components: Inductors and Inductance

An inductor is a coil that's designed for use in electronic circuits. Inductors take advantage of an important characteristic of coils called self inductance, [more…]

Electronics Measurement: Inductance and Henrys

Inductance is only a momentary thing. Exactly how much of a momentary thing depends on the amount of inductance an inductor has. Inductance is measured in units called [more…]

Electronics Measurement: Calculate RL Time Constants

The RL time constant indicates the amount of time that it takes to conduct 63.2% of the current that results from a voltage applied across an inductor. The value 63.2% derives from the calculus equations [more…]

Electronics Measurement: Calculate Inductive Reactance

Although inductors oppose changes in current in an electronic circuit, they don't oppose all changes equally. All inductors present more opposition to fast current changes than they do to slower changes [more…]

Electronics Components: Combine Inductors in Series or in Parallel

Just like resistors or capacitors, you can combine inductors in series or parallel within an electronic circuit. Then you can use simple equations to calculate the total inductance of the circuit. Note [more…]

Electronics Components: Put Inductors to Work

If you have been wondering what inductors are actually used for in real-life electronic circuits, here are a few of the more common uses for inductors: [more…]

Electronics Basics: What Is a Semiconductor?

Semiconductors are used extensively in electronic circuits. As its name implies, a semiconductor is a material that conducts current, but only partly. The conductivity of a semiconductor is somewhere between [more…]

Electronics Basics: P-N Junctions

By themselves, P-type (positively charged) and N-type (negatively charged) semiconductors are just conductors. But if you put them together on an electronic circuit, you create a [more…]

Electronics Components: Diodes

A diode is an electronics component made from a combination of a P-type and N-type semiconductor material, known as a p-n junction, with leads attached to the two ends. These leads allow you to easily [more…]

Electronics Components: Types of Diodes

Diodes come in many different flavors. Some of them are exotic and rarely used by electronics hobbyists, but many are commonly used. The following describes three types of diodes you're likely to encounter [more…]

Electronics Projects: How to Use a Diode to Block Reverse Polarity

Although diodes look a little like resistors, they behave very differently in electronic circuits. Diodes have one ability that sets them apart: They let current flow freely in one direction, but block [more…]

How Rectifier Circuits Work in Electronics

One of the most common uses for rectifier diodes in electronics is to convert household alternating current into direct current that can be used as an alternative to batteries. The rectifier circuit, which [more…]

Electronics Projects: How to Build an LED Flasher Using an Oscillator

An electronic circuit that generates repeated waveforms is an oscillator. The exact waveform generated depends on the type of circuit used to create the oscillator. Some circuits generate sine waves, some [more…]

Electronics Components: Why Transistors Were Invented

Think of a transistor as an electronic lever. A lever is a device that lets you lift a large load by exerting a small amount of effort. In essence, a lever amplifies your effort. That's what a transistor [more…]

Electronics Components: Look inside a Transistor

Have you ever taken apart an electronic gadget just to see all of the neat electronic stuff inside? If so, you have likely seen a number of transistors already. Consider this a guided tour of the transistors [more…]

Electronics Components: The Most Important Transistor Specifications

Transistors are more complicated devices than resistors, capacitors, inductors, and diodes. Whereas those electronic components have just a few specifications to wrangle with, such as ohms of resistance [more…]

Electronics Components: Transistor Specifications

There are many different kinds of transistors. The most basic kind is called a bipolar transistor. Another variety of transistor, called a field-effect transistor [more…]

Electronics Components: Amplify with a Transistor

The most common way to use a transistor as an amplifier is in an electronic circuit sometimes called a common-emitter circuit because the emitter is connected to ground, which means that both the input [more…]

Electronics Components: Transistors as a Magic Potentiometer

A transistor within an electronic circuit works like a combination of a diode and a variable resistor, also called a potentiometer or pot. But this isn't just an ordinary pot; it's a magic pot whose knob [more…]

Electronics Components: Use a Transistor as a Switch

One of the most common uses for transistors in an electronic circuit is as simple switches. In short, a transistor conducts current across the collector-emitter path only when a voltage is applied to the [more…]

Electronics Projects: How to Build an LED Driver Circuit

In this project, you build an electronic circuit that uses a transistor to switch on an LED using a current that's much smaller than the LED current. When you close the switch, both LEDs light up. However [more…]

Electronics Projects: How to Build a NOT Gate Circuit

A gate is a basic component of digital electronics. Gate circuits are built from transistor switches that are either ON or OFF. There are a total of 16 different kinds of gates. [more…]

Electronics Components: Oscillator Circuits

An oscillator is an electronic circuit that generates repeated waveforms. The exact waveform generated depends on the type of circuit used to create the oscillator. One of the most commonly used oscillator [more…]

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