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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…]

Linear Dependent Sources and Circuit Analysis

Dependent sources are used to model transistors and the operational amplifier IC. A dependent source is a voltage or current source controlled by either a voltage or a current at the input side of the [more…]

Analyze Circuits with Dependent Sources

You can analyze circuits with dependent sources using node-voltage analysis, source transformation, and the Thévenin technique, among others. For analyzing circuits that have dependent sources, each technique [more…]

Describe a JFET Transistor with a Dependent Source

Transistors are amplifiers in which a small signal controls a larger signal. One type of transistor is a junction field-effect transistor (JFET). JFET transistors provide a good picture of how transistor [more…]

Transistors and Electrical Signals

Transistors are commonly used to amplify signals. An electrical signal is the pattern over time of an electrical current. Often, the way an electrical signal changes its shape conveys information about [more…]

Transistors: Masters of Switching and Amplifying

Transistors basically do just two things in electronic circuits: switch and amplify. But those two jobs are the key to getting really interesting things done. Here's why those functions are so important [more…]

Bipolar Junction Transistors

One of the first transistors to be invented was the bipolar junction transistor (BJT), and BJTs are what most hobbyists use in home-brewed circuits. BJTs consist of two pn-junctions fused together to form [more…]

Field-Effect Transistors

A field-effect transistor (FET) consists of a channel of N- or P-type semiconductor material through which current can flow, with a different material [more…]

How to Recognize a Transistor When You See One

The semiconductor material in a transistor is the size of a grain of sand or even smaller, so manufacturers put these teensy components in a metal or plastic case with leads sticking out so you can connect [more…]

How Transistors Work

Bipolar junction transistors (BJTs) and field-effect transistors (FETs) work basically the same way. The voltage you apply to the input (base, for a BJT, or [more…]

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