A diode is a two-terminal semiconductor device that allows current to flow in only one direction. In other words, a diode is a unidirectional device. When the anode voltage is more positive than the cathode voltage, the diode is said to be forward-biased. Similarly, when the cathode voltage is more positive than the anode, the diode is reverse-biased.
Uses of Diodes
One of the diodes’ core applications lies in blocking the current in one direction while allowing the current in the opposite direction. There are different types of diodes, and they are all used in numerous ways for various applications. Some of the applications of diodes are listed below:
- Diodes are widely used in transforming alternating current into direct current.
- Diodes are used in surge protectors as they can prevent a spike in voltages.
- Diodes are used in digital logic.
- Zener diodes are used as voltage regulators.
- Varactor diodes are used in electronic tuning.
A transistor is a semiconducting device that can either act as a switch or an amplifier. Transistors control and regulate the flow of electronic signals. Transistors consist of three pair of terminals, and they are named as follows:
There are mainly two types of transistors, and they are named as follows:
- Bipolar Junction Transistors
- Field-Effect Transistors
Uses of Transistors
In our modern society, extensive electricity use has encouraged transistors’ various benefits in almost every electronic circuit. Some of the applications of transistors are listed below:
- Transistors are widely used for switching and amplification purposes.
- Heterojunction Bipolar Transistors (HBT) can provide faster switching speeds and are used in analog and digital microwave applications.
- Schottky Transistors prevent transistors from saturating by diverting high input current.
Rectifiers are electronic devices that convert alternating current to direct current. Rectifiers are mainly classified into two types as:
- Controlled Rectifiers
- Uncontrolled Rectifiers
Controlled rectifiers are those whose voltage can be controlled and varied based on the application. There are two types of controlled rectifiers, and they are named as Half Wave Controlled Rectifier and Full Wave Controlled Rectifier. We use SCRs, MOSFETs and IGBTs to make an uncontrolled rectifier a controlled one.
Uncontrolled rectifiers are a type of rectifiers whose voltage cannot be controlled. Uncontrolled rectifiers are further classified as Half wave rectifiers and Full wave Rectifiers. Let us learn more about these two types of rectifiers and their applications in real life.
Half Wave Rectifiers
A half-wave rectifier transforms an AC into a DC. For this transformation, a half-wave rectifier uses only one diode. This type of diode allows the one-half cycle of an AC voltage waveform to pass while blocking the other half cycle. Due to this functionality of half-wave rectifiers, they are used in the following applications:
- They are used in signal peak applications.
- They are used for signal demodulation purposes.
Full Wave Rectifiers
A full-wave rectifier is defined as a rectifier that converts the complete cycle of alternating current into pulsating DC. Unlike the halfwave rectifier that utilizes only the halfwave of the input AC cycle, the full-wave rectifier utilizes the full cycle. The full-wave rectifier can overcome the lower efficiency of the half-wave rectifier.
Advantages of Full Wave Rectifiers
The rectification efficiency of full-wave rectifiers is double that of half-wave rectifiers. The ripple factor in a full-wave rectifier is lower.