Electronic Circuits I Laboratory

2.1 Objectives
• • • Understanding the operating principle of diode clipping circuit Understanding the operating principle of clamping circuit Understanding the waveform change of diode clipping and clamping circuits when the bias is applied.

2.2 Basic Description
As you know, diodes can be used as switches depending on the biasing type, reverse of forward. The clipping circuit, also referred to as clipper, clips off some of the portions of the input signal and uses the clipped signal as the output signal. The clamping circuit or clamper keeps the amplitude of the output signal same as that of the input signal except that the D.C. level (offset) has been changed. The clamper through which the input waveform shifts to positive direction is called positive clamper, otherwise, is called negative clamper.

Fig. 2.1 – Ideal Diode – Switch Terminalogy

2.2.a Clipper Circuits
There are two types of clipper circuits, the series and parallel diode clipping circuits.

2.2.a.1 Series Diode Clipping Circuit
In these type of circuits, the diode is connected between the input and output voltage terminals (Fig 2.2)


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Fig. 2.2
As Fig.2.2 reveals, the negative cycle of the input voltage can be clipped of by this type of series clippers. Reverse of the diode pins yields to a positive cycle clipping circuit as shown in Fig. 2.3.

Fig. 2.3 Previous circuits clip the values larger or smaller than zero voltage. This voltage, technically called “threshold voltage” and can be changed to a desired value by inserting a D.C. voltage source. This is achieved in two different ways. In the first type, the voltage source of Em ( positive or negative) is connected through output terminals as in Fig. 2.4. Depending on the diode connection (normal


Electronic Circuits I Laboratory or reverse), the values smaller (Fig.2.4.a) or greater (Fig.2.4.b) than Em is clipped and assigned as Em. .


b Fig. 2.4. Note that if Em is negative, ( where the voltage source is reversely connected) again the values smaller or larger than this negative value is clipped, do not get confused. In the second type of thresholded series clipping, the voltage source is applied between the input and output terminals, series with the diode. This time, the clipped values are assigned to zero and the net output voltage equals to the difference between the input and threshold values.(If Em is negative, then E0 = E – Em = E + |Em|)


b Fig. 2.5


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2.2.a.2 Parallel Diode Clipping Circuit
In this type of clippers, the diode is connected between output terminals. The on/off state of diode directly affects the output voltage. These type of clippers may also have a non-zero threshold voltage by addition of a voltage series with diode. Following figures illustrate the clipping process.


b Fig. 2.6 – Zero Threshold Parallel Clippers


b Fig. 2.7 – Thresholded Parallel Clippers


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2.2.b Clamper Circuits
Clamper Circuits, or briefly clampers are used to change the D.C. level of a signal to a desired value.( Fig 2.8 ).

Fig 2.8
Being different from clippers, clamping circuits uses a capacitor and a diode connection. When diode is in its on state, the output voltage equals to diode drop voltage (ideally zero) plus the voltage source, if any. Now let us examine the clamping process for the circuit in Fig. 2.9.

Fig 2.9 – Typical Clamping Circuit As you know, this circuit, in fact, is a series R-C circuit. The resistance of diode ( several ohms above its drop voltage) and the small capacitance yield to a small time-constant for this circuit. This means that the capacitor will rapidly be charged if any input voltage, that is enough to swtich on the diode, is applied. The diode will conduct during the positive cycle of the input signal (Fig. 2.10) and output voltage will be ideally zero ( in practice this voltage equals ~0.6 V).

Fig 2.10. Diode conducts during positive cycle Note that during positive cycle the capacitor is rapidly charged in inverse polarity with the input voltage. After transition to negative cycle, the diode becomes to its off state. In this case, the output voltage equals to the sum of the input voltage and the voltage across the terminals of the capacitor which have the same polarity with each other.(Fig 2.11) 14

Electronic Circuits I Laboratory E0 = - ( |Ei |+ |Ec | )

Fig. 2.11. Diode is switched off during negative cycle The resulting signal after a complete cycle is shown below.

Fig. 2.12 By this process, the input signal is shifted to negative D.C. value (its maximum value is ideally zero) without any change in its amplitude ideally. There exist again modified versions of this circuit inwhich a threshold value is inserted for clamping. Following figures illustrate these modifications and resulting outputs.


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Fig. 2.14


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2.3 Experiment Equipments
1. KL- 200 Linear Circuit Lab. Device 2. Experiment Module: KL-23001 3. Experiment Instruments: Oscilloscope, Multimeter 4. Connection cables and short-circuit clips

2.4 Procedures
Procedure 1: Series Diode Clipping Circuit

(1) (2)

Locate block b of module KL-23001 Insert short-circuit clips refering to Fig. 2.15 a

Fig. 2.15 (3)
Using oscilloscope, adjust function generator to 10 V p-p ( 7.07 V rms) , 1kHz Sine wave. Make a good adjustment since this signal is the common input signal that will be used during whole experiment.


Adjust oscilloscope divisions until you have a clear view of input signal.


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(5) (6) (7) (8) (9)

Disconnect function generator output from oscilloscope and apply this to TP2.

Examine the output signal by connecting the second channel of oscilloscope to TP3. Record the plot on Graph 2.1 a. Turn off all active devices, and reconfigure the short-circuit clips refering to Fig. 2.15 b. Only change the generator output from TP2 to TP1.

Again examine the output waveform and plot output waveform on Graph 2.1.b



Graph 2.1


Electronic Circuits I Laboratory Procedure 2: Thresholded Series Diode Clipping Circuit In this procedure, a threshold value is added to the previous circuit layout. This is achieved by substitution of lower short-circuit clip with a voltage source.


Turn off all active devices, and connect short-circuit clip and voltage source ( + 5 V DC) by refering to Fig.2.16-a.

Fig. 2.16 (2) (3) (4)
Record the plot of output voltage on Graph 2.2.a (on Pg. 25)

Turn off all active devices, and reconfigure short-circuit clips refering to Fig.2.16-b. Plot output waveform on Graph 2.2.b

Turn off all active devices. Now you will apply negative threshold value to the clipper circuit.


Refering to Fig.2.17-a, reconfigure short circuit clips and substitute +5V DC source with -5 V DC Source. Do not directly reverse the terminals of + 5 V source, this will cause a short circuit !!!


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(6) (7) (8)

Fig. 2.17 Observe and plot the output waveform on Graph 2.2.c

Turn off all active devices again and rearrange short circuit clip refering to Fig.2.17.b Observe and plot output voltage on Graph 2.2.d


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c Graph 2.2 Procedure 3: Parallel Diode Clipping Circuit


(1) (2)

Locate block c of module KL-23001 Refer to Fig.2.18-a and arrange short circuit clips.


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b Fig. 2.18 (3) Observe output voltage on TP2 and plot on Graph 2.3.a (4) Turn off all active devices and rearrange short circuit clips by refering to Fig. 2.18 b. (5) Observe output voltage on TP2 and plot on Graph 2.3.b

a Graph 2.3



Electronic Circuits I Laboratory Procedure 4 : Diode Clamping Circuit

(1) (2)

Now locate block e. Arrange clips according to Fig.2.19-a.


b Fig. 2.19

(3) (4) (5)

Observe and plot OUT voltage on Graph 2.4.a Turn off all active devices and rearrange circuit in Fig. 2.19-b Again plot OUT voltage on Graph 2.4.b.


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a Graph 2.4


2.5 Conclusion
In this experiment you have learned two main types of diode circuits. • • Clippers Clampers

Although the clippers are also classified into series and parallel clipping circuits, both circuits are based on the same principle. In other words, the design of both circuits utilizes the characteristics of diode that will be forward turned on and will reversely turned off. Clampers can be used to change the DC level of an input signal.


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