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Wires and connections Component Wire Circuit Symbol Function of Component To pass current very easily from one

part of a circuit to another. A 'blob' should be drawn where wires are connected (joined), but it is sometimes omitted. Wires connected at 'crossroads' should be staggered slightly to form two T-junctions, as shown on the right. In complex diagrams it is often necessary to draw wires crossing even though they are not connected. I prefer the 'bridge' symbol shown on the right because the simple crossing on the left may be misread as a join where you have forgotten to add a 'blob'! Circuit Symbol Function of Component Supplies electrical energy. The larger terminal (on the left) is positive (+). A single cell is often called a battery, but strictly a battery is two or more cells joined together. Supplies electrical energy. A battery is more than one cell. The larger terminal (on the left) is

Wires joined

Wires not joined

Power Supplies Component

Cell

Battery

positive (+). DC supply Supplies electrical energy. DC = Direct Current, always flowing in one direction. Supplies electrical energy. AC = Alternating Current, continually changing direction. A safety device which will 'blow' (melt) if the current flowing through it exceeds a specified value. Two coils of wire linked by an iron core. Transformers are used to step up (increase) and step down (decrease) AC voltages. Energy is transferred between the coils by the magnetic field in the core. There is no electrical connection between the coils. A connection to earth. For many electronic circuits this is the 0V (zero volts) of the power supply, but for mains electricity and some radio circuits it really means the earth. It is also known as ground. Circuit Symbol Function of Component A transducer which converts electrical energy to light. This symbol is used for a lamp providing illumination, for

AC supply

Fuse

Transformer

Earth (Ground)

Output Devices: Lamps, Heater, Motor, etc. Component Lamp (lighting)

Solenoid) Switches Component Push Switch (push-to- . It may have an iron core inside the coil. This symbol is used for a lamp which is an indicator. It can be used as a transducer converting electrical energy to mechanical energy by pulling on something.example a car headlamp or torch bulb. A transducer which converts electrical energy to sound. A coil of wire which creates a magnetic field when current passes through it. A transducer which converts electrical energy to heat. Circuit Symbol Function of Component A push switch allows current to flow only when the button is Lamp (indicator) Heater Motor Bell Buzzer Inductor (Coil. for example a warning light on a car dashboard. A transducer which converts electrical energy to sound. A transducer which converts electrical energy to kinetic energy (motion). A transducer which converts electrical energy to light.

This switch can be wired up as a reversing switch for a motor. Some DPDT switches have a Push-toBreak Switch On-Off Switch (SPST) 2-way Switch (SPDT) Dual On-Off Switch (DPST) Reversing Switch (DPDT) . A dual on-off switch which is often used to switch mains electricity because it can isolate both the live and neutral connections. DPDT = Double Pole. This is the switch used to operate a doorbell. Single Throw. SPDT = Single Pole. SPST = Single Pole. A 2-way changeover switch directs the flow of current to one of two routes according to its position. DPST = Double Pole. Double Throw. An on-off switch allows current to flow only when it is in the closed (on) position. Double Throw. it is open (off) only when the button is pressed. Some SPDT switches have a central off position and are described as 'on-off-on'.make) pressed. Single Throw. This type of push switch is normally closed (on).

Examples include: adjusting lamp brightness. adjusting motor speed. for example to limit the current passing through an LED. An electrically operated switch. It can be used like this as a transducer converting position (angle of the control spindle) to an Relay Resistors Component Resistor Variable Resistor (Rheostat) Variable Resistor (Potentiometer) . NC = Normally Closed. NO = Normally Open. Some publications still use the old resistor symbol: This type of variable resistor with 2 contacts (a rheostat) is usually used to control current. This type of variable resistor with 3 contacts (a potentiometer) is usually used to control voltage.central off position. and adjusting the rate of flow of charge into a capacitor in a timing circuit. A resistor is used with a capacitor in a timing circuit. for example a 9V battery circuit connected to the coil can switch a 230V AC mains circuit. Circuit Symbol Function of Component A resistor restricts the flow of current. COM = Common.

A capacitor is used with a resistor in a timing circuit. A variable capacitor is used in a radio tuner. A capacitor stores electric charge. polarised Variable Capacitor Trimmer Capacitor . to block DC signals but pass AC signals.electrical signal. It is designed to be set when the circuit is made and then left without further adjustment. A capacitor is used with a resistor in a timing circuit. It can also be used as a filter. It can also be used as a filter. This type of variable capacitor (a trimmer) is Variable Resistor (Preset) Capacitors Component Capacitor Capacitor. to block DC signals but pass AC signals. This type must be connected the correct way round. This type of variable resistor (a preset) is operated with a small screwdriver or similar tool. Presets are cheaper than normal variable resistors so they are often used in projects to reduce the cost. Circuit Symbol Function of Component A capacitor stores electric charge.

A light-sensitive diode. A transistor amplifies current. Photodiode Transistors Component Transistor NPN Circuit Symbol Function of Component A transistor amplifies current. It can be used with other components to make an amplifier or switching circuit. A transducer which converts electrical energy to light. A special diode which is used to maintain a fixed voltage across its terminals. Transistor PNP . It can be used with other components to make an amplifier or switching circuit.operated with a small screwdriver or similar tool. Diodes Component Diode LED Light Emitting Diode Zener Diode Circuit Symbol Function of Component A device which only allows current to flow in one direction. It is designed to be set when the circuit is made and then left without further adjustment.

A device which is designed to receive or transmit radio signals. A transducer which converts electrical energy to sound. Really it is a block diagram symbol because it represents a circuit rather than just one component. An amplifier circuit with one input. A transducer which converts electrical energy to sound. A transducer which converts electrical energy to sound. but most . It is also known as an antenna. The proper name for voltage is 'potential difference'. Function of Component A transducer which converts sound to electrical energy. Earphone Loudspeaker Piezo Transducer Amplifier (general symbol) Aerial (Antenna) Meters and Oscilloscope Component Voltmeter Circuit Symbol Function of Component A voltmeter is used to measure voltage.Phototransistor Audio and Radio Devices Component Microphone Circuit Symbol A light-sensitive transistor.

+Vs. off). high. Circuit Symbol Function of Component A transducer which converts brightness (light) to resistance (an electrical property). Galvanometer Ohmmeter Oscilloscope Sensors (input devices) Component LDR Thermistor Logic Gates Logic gates process signals which represent true (1. An ohmmeter is used to measure resistance. on) or false (0. There are two sets of symbols: traditional and IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission). low. usually 1mA or less. An oscilloscope is used to display the shape of electrical signals and it can be used to measure their voltage and time period. A galvanometer is a very sensitive meter which is used to measure tiny currents.people prefer to say voltage! Ammeter An ammeter is used to measure current. 0V. Most multimeters have an ohmmeter setting. LDR = Light Dependent Resistor A transducer which converts temperature (heat) to resistance (an electrical property). For more information please see the Logic Gates page. Gate Type Traditional IEC Symbol Function of .

Symbol Gate A NOT gate can only have one input. A NOT gate is also called an inverter. so the output is true when the input is false. An AND gate can have two or more inputs. The output of an AND gate is true when all its inputs are true. A NAND gate can have two or NOT AND NAND . The 'o' on the output means 'not'. The output of a NOT gate is the inverse (opposite) of its input.

An OR gate can have two or more inputs. The 'o' on the output means 'not' showing that it is a Not AND gate.more inputs. The output of a NAND gate is true unless all its inputs are true. A NOR gate can have two or more inputs. The output of an OR gate is true when at least one of its inputs is true. The output of a NOR OR NOR . The 'o' on the output means 'not' showing that it is a Not OR gate.

The output of an EX-NOR gate is true when its inputs are the same (both true or both false). EX-OR EX-NOR . one false). The 'o' on the output means 'not' showing that it is a Not EX-OR gate. An EX-OR gate can only have two inputs.gate is true when none of its inputs are true. An EX-NOR gate can only have two inputs. The output of an EX-OR gate is true when its inputs are different (one true.

O) Pushbutton Switch .Symbol Component name Meaning Wire Symbols Electrical Wire Conductor of electrical current Connected crossing Wires are not connected Connected Wires Not connected Wires Switch Symbols and Relay Symbols Disconnects SPST Toggle Switch current when open Selects between two connections Momentary switch normally open Momentary switch - SPDT Toggle Switch Pushbutton Switch (N.

C) normally closed DIP switch is used for onboard configuration Relay open / close connection by an electromagnet Close connection by jumper insertion on pins. Solder to close connection DIP Switch SPST Relay SPDT Relay Jumper Solder Bridge Ground Symbols Earth Ground Used for zero potential reference and .(N.

has 2 terminals.has 3 Potentiometer (IEC) terminals. Connected to the chassis of the circuit Chassis Ground Digital / Common Ground Resistor Symbols Resistor (IEEE) Resistor (IEC) Resistor reduces the current flow. Variable Resistor / Rheostat (IEEE) Variable Resistor / Rheostat (IEC) Adjustable resistor . . Potentiometer (IEEE) Adjustable resistor .electrical shock protection.

Capacitor Symbols Capacitor Capacitor is used to store electric charge. It acts as short circuit with AC and open circuit with DC. Electrolytic capacitor Electrolytic capacitor Adjustable capacitance Capacitor Polarized Capacitor Polarized Capacitor Variable Capacitor Inductor / Coil Symbols Inductor Coil / solenoid that generates magnetic field Includes iron Iron Core Inductor .

Variable Inductor Power Supply Symbols Voltage Source Generates constant voltage Generates constant current. AC voltage source Electrical voltage is generated by mechanical rotation of the generator Generates constant voltage Generates constant Current Source AC Voltage Source Generator Battery Cell Battery .

Connected in parallel. Voltmeter . Controlled Voltage Source Controlled Current Source Meter Symbols Measures voltage. Generates current as a function of voltage or current of other circuit element. Has very high resistance.voltage Generates voltage as a function of voltage or current of other circuit element.

Ammeter Measures electric current. Connected serially. Measures resistance Measures electric power Ohmmeter Wattmeter Lamp / Light Bulb Symbols Lamp / light bulb Lamp / light bulb Lamp / light bulb Generates light when current flows through Diode / LED Symbols Diode Diode allows current flow in one direction only (left to . Has near zero resistance.

but also can flow in the reverse direction when above breakdown voltage Schottky diode is a diode with low voltage drop Variable capacitance diode Zener Diode Schottky Diode Varactor / Varicap Diode Tunnel Diode Light Emitting Diode LED emits light when (LED) current flows .right). Allows current flow in one direction.

through Photodiode allows current flow when exposed to light Photodiode Transistor Symbols Allows current flow when high potential at base (middle) Allows current flow when low potential at base (middle) NPN Bipolar Transistor PNP Bipolar Transistor Made from 2 bipolar transistors. Darlington Transistor Has total gain of the product of each gain. .

Symbols Motor Electric motor Change AC voltage from high to low or low to high.JFET-N Transistor N-channel field effect transistor P-channel field effect transistor N-channel MOSFET transistor P-channel MOSFET transistor JFET-P Transistor NMOS Transistor PMOS Transistor Misc. Rings when activated Transformer Electric bell .

Used to protect circuit from high currents.Buzzer Fuse Produce buzzing sound The fuse disconnects when current above threshold. Contains several wires. Fuse Bus Bus Bus Optocoupler Optocoupler / Opto.isolates isolator onnection to other board Loudspeaker Converts electrical signal to . Usually for data / address.

sound waves Converts sound waves to electrical signal Amplify input signal Operates with hysteresis to reduce noise. Converts analog signal to digital numbers Converts digital numbers to analog signal Used to generate precise frequency Microphone Operational Amplifier Schmitt Trigger Analog-to-digital converter (ADC) Digital-to-Analog converter (DAC) Crystal Oscillator .

clock signal Antenna Symbols Antenna / aerial Antenna / aerial Transmits & receives radio waves Two wires simple antenna Dipole Antenna Logic Gates Symbols NOT Gate (Inverter) Outputs 1 when input is 0 Outputs 1 when both inputs are 1. (NOT + AND) Outputs 1 when any AND Gate NAND Gate OR Gate . Outputs 0 when both inputs are 1.

(Exclusive OR) Stores one bit of data NOR Gate XOR Gate D Flip-Flop Multiplexer / Mux 2 Connects the to 1 output to Multiplexer / Mux 4 selected input line. to 1 Connects selected output to the input line. Outputs 0 when any input is 1. (NOT + OR) Outputs 1 when inputs are different.input is 1. Demultiplexer / Demux 1 to 4 .