Op amp voltage followers output the same voltage that they “see” at their input.
A lot of components can build up an output voltage that is desirable. However, usually that output voltage can not provide the current needed to maintain that voltage. They have to become signals. A signal is a voltage that is looked at, but does not provide much, if any, power for a load.
An operation amplifier can easily look at a signal voltage, and output that same voltage to power many loads that don’t need a lot of current.
- Lower inverting input (-) voltage than the non inverting input (+) = output voltage goes up
- Higher – input voltage than the + input = output voltage goes down
- Connecting the output directly to the – input means that the output voltage will move towards the + input voltage, until they are the same.
- The output will provide the current needed to power a load while staying at the + input voltage. As long as stays within it’s own current limits of course. Every output has a maximum amount of current that it can provide at a given voltage.
Dual Supply Op Amp:
Op amps intended to be used with dual/split supplies, can not usually output the full range of voltages between the positive, and negative, supply rail voltages.
They typically fall one to two volts shy of both supply rail voltages.
0V ground is typically the middle voltage of a dual/split supply. Therefore, there is a positive and negative voltage in relationship to ground. That makes it easy to alternate whether the output is the source, or sink of the current.
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