Diode – Rectifier

Rectifier diodes are primarily used to ensure that current can flow in one direction but not the other.

Quick video lessons diagram 1 by electronzap electronzapdotom
Quick video lessons diagram 1 by electronzap electronzapdotom

Video

Electronics course 2 rectifier diode and LED forward and reverse biased explained with multimeter

 

Basic rectifier diode Properties

Rectifier diode and LED schematic symbols and common appearance with forward biased polarity diagram by electronzap electronzapdotcom
Rectifier diode and LED schematic symbols and common appearance with forward biased polarity diagram by electronzap electronzapdotcom
  • 2 terminals: Anode and Cathode. Anode is made of P type semiconductor material while Cathode is made of N type semiconductor material.
  • Forward biased: Anode is more positive than Cathode. Allows current to flow easily as long as the forward voltage is exceeded. Forward voltage is the amount of voltage that a diode drops from series components while it is wired forward biased. Forward voltage is typically about 0.7V for silicon diodes, 0.3V for germanium diodes and around 2-3V for LEDs.
  • Reverse biased: Cathode is more positive than Anode. – Blocks a lot of voltage and thus current. – Most diodes must be able to block whatever reverse biased voltage may be applied to them or risk being destroyed. Zener diodes however are specially made to safely conduct some current while connected reverse biased – Remember that alternating current (AC) reaches voltages a bit higher than than the root mean square (RMS) value that is usually given.
  • 1N4001 – DO-41 plastic package. Rectifier diode part number that is commonly included in kits. 1A max. forward current, approx 0.7V forward voltage, and 50V DC/35V RMS (AC) maximum DC reverse voltage.
  • 1N4148 – Small signal, fast switching diodes – DO-35 glass package, up to 100MHz switching. 100V VRRM (repetitive reverse voltage), 300mA IF (forward DC current), 200mA IO (average rectified current), 500mW PD (maximum power dissipation)

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Other basic topics:

555 timer is an integrated circuit (IC). Being an IC, it has complex circuitry combined in a single package with external pins/terminals to connect to other circuitry. You can easily make all kinds of fun circuits with just a 555 timer and the components covered above, so I think it’s a good component to learn next.

Transistors will probably be the most challenging components to learn. Understanding them will help you understand all of electronics much better, and help you the most in being creative while designing your own circuits.

Other topics:

These pages are still being compiled.



A lot of the components that I use are in this diode and transistor semiconductor kit.

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