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BASIC OF ELECTRONICS FOR MECHATRONICS STUDENTS
Basic of Electronics
Chapter 1: Basic Concepts
• • • • • •
Atoms and Electrical Charge Current. Voltage. Power Resistance Ohm's Law
1.1. Atoms and Electrical Charge - Discusses the structure of atoms.
Figure 1-1. Model of an Atom Atoms are the building blocks of all matter. They are made up of protons, neutrons, and electrons. Every electron has a small negative (-) charge. The proton has the same amount of charge except that it is the opposite, positive (+) charge. Neutrons are electrically neutral and have no charge. The protons and neutrons are located in the center of atoms forming what is called the nucleus and the electrons revolve around them. It is very important to know that particles of like charges will repel and unlike charges will attract. For example, two protons or two electrons will repel each other. However, a proton and a electron will attract. That is how the electrons are held inside the atom. The attraction between the electrons and protons keeps the electrons in orbit much like the gravitational attraction between the sun and its planets.
Basic of Electronics
Figure 1-2. Interaction between electrons and protons Electricity is the flow of electrons so it is necessary to measure the charge. The basic unit for measuring charge is the coulomb or the letter C. 1 coulomb is equal to the charge of 6,250,000,000,000,000,000 electrons!!! 1C = 6.25x10^18 electrons 1.2. Current - Introduces current and ampere. Electric current is the amount of electrons, or charge, moving past a point every second. It is basically the speed of electron flow. The faster the electrons flow, the higher the current.
Figure 1-3. Electron Flow Current is represented by the letter I. The basic unit for measuring current is ampere. Ampere can be abbreviated to amp or just A. 1 amp = 1 coulomb/sec Meaning for every amp, there are 6.25x10^18 electrons moving past a point every second. 1.3. Voltage - Potential difference and voltage To make sense of voltage, we will need to make an analogy. Lets imagine that electrons are represented by a marble on a flat plane. At this point, the plane is level and the marble does not move. If the plane is lifted at one side, the marble will roll down to the lower point.
Basic of Electronics Figure 1-4. Analogy electron with a marble In electricity, the high point is a point with lots of electrons and the low point is a point with a lack of electrons. The high point is called the high potential and the low point is the low potential. The difference between these two points is called the potential difference. The larger the potential difference, the larger the voltage.
Figure 1-5. Energy potential Voltage can be thought of as the measure of the pressure pushing the electrons. The higher the pressure, the higher the voltage. Voltage is represented by the letter E. The basic unit of measure is volts or the letter V. One volt will push 1 amp of current through 1 ohm of resistance. Resistance will be discussed in a later section.
1.4. Power - Discusses power or the amount of work a circuit is doing. Power is simply the amount of energy used or the amount of "work" a circuit is doing. Power is represented by the letter P. The basic unit for measuring power is watts or the letter W. To find power, all you need is a simple equation: P=EI or Power equals voltage times current. For example, if E = 9V I = 0.5A then P = 9 * 0.5 P = 4.5W
Basic of Electronics 1.5. Resistance - Discusses electron flow, materials, and the ohm unit. To better understand what resistance is, you must first get an idea of how electrons flow. When an electron is knocked out of an atom, it will fly off and hit another atom. If the electron strikes the atom with enough force, it will knock off another electron. The atom that was just knocked off will hit another atom and so forth.
Figure 1-6. Two electrons Note that every time an electron strikes another, it is transferring its energy. Some of the energy is converted into heat every time it is transferred. The voltage will drop as the energy is transferred over long distances. Thus a long wire has a higher resistance than a short wire. Some materials - such as copper and silver - does not hold on to its electrons very tightly. Therefore it doesn't require much energy to knock off an electron. These materials are called conductors and has a very low resistance to electron flow. Materials such as clay and plastics hold on to their electrons more tightly than conductors. It takes more energy to knock off an electron from these materials. These materials are called insulators and has a high resistance to electron flow. Now, you must understand that this is NOT how electrons really flow; It serves only as something for you to work with. To really know how electrons flow, which we will not get into, you will need to study quantum physics. Resistance is represented by the letter R. The basic unit of measure is ohm or the symbol (Greek omega). In the next section (Ohm's Law), we will show you the relationship between Current, Voltage, and Resistance. Resistance will also be further discussed as we introduce the resistor.
1.6. Ohm's Law - The relationship between Current, Voltage, and Resistance. The German physicist, George Simon Ohm, established that voltage in volt, electrical resistance in ohms, and ampereres flowing through any circuit are all related. Ohms’s law states:
Basic of Electronics It requires 1 volt to push 1 ampere through 1 ohm of resistance. Ohm law camn also be sated as asimple formula to calculate one value of an electrical circuit if the other two are known. I=E/R Where: I= Current in ampere (A) E= Voltage in volt (V) R= Resistance in ohms (Ω) -6- .
the 4 horizontal lines. Each type of component has a unique symbol and a name (usually 1-2 letters). the triangle in a circle. the second resistor will be called R2. The triangle in the circle represents the light emitting diode and the wavy lines represent the resistor -. All relevant values and component specific information are usually included.Basic of Electronics Chapter 2: Schematic Diagram A schematic diagram shows how each component connect with another. This tells you what value to use for that component. and the thing with the wavy lines. Can you guess which is the battery? Yes. Below is an example of a schematic diagram: Figure 2-1 A simple schematic diagram As you can see. Note the "R1" next to the resistor symbol and "R1 470 ohm" below the diagram. It is a simple and easy to read outline of the circuit.both of which will be discussed in the components section. If there was a second resistor. It's not that tough right? -7- . this diagram has 3 components: the thing with 4 horizontal lines. That's all it is to schematic diagrams.
indicates that the resistor will be within 5% of its value.A component that resist the flow of electrons. Diodes . As its name implies.1. Capacitors . Put them all together and you have the value. -8- .A component used for switching and amplifying. A 5% tolerance (gold band) for example. For most applications.A mini recharable battery.it tells you how many zeros to put after the significant figures. Resistors are one of the most commonly used components in electronics. The first two color bands from the left are the significant figures . Integrated circuits .Basic of Electronics Chapter 3: Electronics Component • • • • • • Resistors .simply write down the numbers represented by the colors. Transistors . resistors resist the flow of electrons. Recall that resistance is measured in ohms. Resistors .A component that resist the flow of electrons. The third band is the multiplier . hold the resistor so that the tolerance band is on the right. a resistor within 5% tolerance should be sufficient. They are used to add resistance to a circuit.An overview of integrated circuits Switches . 3. To get the value of a resistor.A "one way street" for electrons. The tolerance bands indicates the accuracy of the values.Discusses the different configurations of switches. The color bands around the resistors are color codes that tell you its resistance value.
Basic of Electronics NOTE: There are resistors with more bands and other types for specific applications. Other types are carbon film which is a thin layer of carbon on a ceramic rod.2 This mean that 1 ohm.6 6. and metal oxide and metal glaze on glass rods. These are 1. Decimal points are not used on circuit diagrams (they may be confused with fly specks). You should not use a 1/4 watt resistor in a circuit that has more than 1/4 watt of power flowing. High stability resistors (marked with a fifth pink band) do not change value easily. 3. it is okay to use a 1/2 watt resistor in a 1/4 watt circuit. One last important note about resistors is their wattage rating.300. 1000 ohms is 1k.9 4. 4 band resistors(the ones discussed here) are the most common and should work for most projects.7 5.000 ohms is 1M. (color would change with heat). Wire wound resistors have their value written on them. Wire wound resistors are used where the resistor has to dissipate a lot of heat. 180 ohm. Most resistors are color coded to indicate their value and tolerance. Some resistors change in value when exposed to light. Figure 3-1 Schematic and Symbol of Resistor The simplest resistors are made from carbon rod with end caps and wire leads. However. To limit the range of resistor values to a manageable number a preferred range only is available. Faulty resistors have gone open circuit or changed in value. -9- . Resistors have a wattage rating. 3. 2200 ohm resistors etc are available.3M would be written as 3M3 and 1. For example.000 ohms is 3.2 1.0 1. 12 ohm.8 2. However. Some resistors are designed to change in value when heated. Resistors generate heat.2 2. They are called LIGHT DEPENDANT RESISTORS.8k as 1K8 etc.8 8.3M etc. 1000. The higher this rating the more heat they can dissipate. They never go short circuit.7 3. They are called THERMISTORS and are used in temperature measuring circuits. it is NOT okay to use a 1/4 watt resistor in a 1/2 watt circuit.3 3.
Examples are volume and brightness controls. Once adjusted. they are never touched again.7 ohm 10% 68RJ=68 ohm 5% Variable resistors are available. F=1% G=2% J=5% K=10% M=20% R22M= 0.22 ohm 20% 4R7K= 4.2. Capacitors . 3. Capacitors are basically two parallel metal plates separated by an insulator.Basic of Electronics On circuit diagrams tolerance is indicated by the following letters.A mini rechargeable battery. These can be operated by means of a knob on the control panel. Figure 3-4 a pair plate of Capacitor This insulator is called the dielectric. Preset variable resistors are internal controls which are adjusted in value by means of a screwdriver. -10- .
Thus we have ceramic.000. The first 2 digit are the significant figures and the third digit is the multiplier. • Ceramic capacitors are brown and has a disc shape. Capacitors come in all shapes and sizes and are usually marked with their value. mica. you simply decode the 3 digit number on the surface of the capacitor. If it is necessary.000. These capacitors are measured in µF. However.000 So 100. To find the value.Capacitors can be charged and discharged. similar to a car battery.1µF = 0. These capacitors are polarized so you must connect the negative side in the right place. We will only be discussing two types of the most commonly used capacitors: Ceramic and Electrolytic. micro = 1/1. paper air capacitors etc. The amount of charge that a capacitor can hold is measured in Farads or the letter F. -11- .0000001F DC current cannot flow through a capacitor since the dielectric forms an open circuit. Figure 3-2 Ceramic Capacitor • Electrolytic Capacitors has a cylinder shape. This can be a hazard if they are charged up to high voltages.000pF = 0.000 and pico = 1/1. The coding is just like the resistor color codes except that they used numbers instead of colors.Basic of Electronics Capacitor types are named after the dielectric. The value of the resistor as well as the negative side is clearly printed on the capacitor. Capacitors are the second most commonly used component in electronics. 1F is too large for capacitors.000. meaning that you can connect them in any way. Capacitors can be charged up and store electricity.000. These capacitors are nonpolarized. capacitors with large charges should be discharged via a resistor to limit the discharge current. These capacitors are measured in pF. polyester. They can be thought of as tiny rechargeable batteries -. so microfarads(µF) and picofarads(pF) are used.
102 is 1000 pF and 104 is 100. Some capacitors such as electrolytic and tantalums are polarised. It is OK to use a voltage below the maximum value. The voltage across the terminals must not exceed this value. To find the total value of capacitors in parallel (that is connected across each other) their values are added. To find the total value if they are in series (that is in line with each other) then the following formula is used. 1/C total =1/C1 + 1/C2 + 1/C3 etc Variable capacitors are available in which the value can be adjusted by controlling the amount of overlap of the plates or the distance between them.000 pF = 100 nF = 0. Figure 3-4 Color band on Capacitor Some values are marked in picofarads using three digit numbers. A 2200pf capacitor would have three red bands. The first two digits are the base number and the third digit is a multiplier.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-3 Electrolytic Capacitor They are often marked with their maximum working voltage. For example. -12- . This means that they must be fitted the correct way round. Some values are indicated with a colour code similar to resistors.1 uF. There is a type of diode called the Varicap diode which similar characteristics. There can be some confusion. These merge into one wide red band. They are marked to indicate polarity.
one pin is longer then the other. the diode allows the electrons flow. Zener diodes have a set voltage rating. and Light Emitting Diodes.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-5 Symbol of fix and variable capacitor 3.3 Diodes . Figure 3-6 Diodes and its symbol There are basically three different types of diodes: Diodes. When a voltage exceeds the voltage rating going the opposite direction (from anode to cathode). Diodes flow from cathode to anode. However. Note: there aren't any bands to identify which pin is anode and which is cathode. Zener Diodes. The cathode side of the diode is marked with a band around it.A "one way street" for electrons. Figure 3-7 Symbol of LED -13- . Diodes let electrons flow through them only in one direction. The longer pin is the anode. Light Emitting Diodes (LED for short) are just like the regular diodes except that it lights up when electrons are flowing through. the positive side.
Detailed characteristics of a diode can be found by looking up the type number in a data book.Basic of Electronics Diodes are polarised. Diodes have two connections. This is because an electric current will only flow through them in one direction (like air will only flow one way through a type valve). There are specialised types of diode available such as the zener and light emitting diode (LED). Figure 3-9 Some diode circuit symbols LED The light emitting diode (LED) is commonly used as an indicator. act as a warning indicator. ring or some other mark. -14- . or be part of trendy jewelry etc. If you know how to measure resistance with a meter then test some diodes. The cathode is always identified by a dot. It can show when the power is on. Figure 3-8 Mark indicator in Diodes The pcb is often marked with a + sign for the cathode end. Diodes come in all shapes and sizes. A good one has low resistance in one direction and high in the other. They are often marked with a type number. an anode and a cathode. which means that they must be inserted into the PCB the correct way round.
The necessary data can be obtained from a catalogue or data book. The transistor is a three terminal solid state semiconductor device that can be used for amplification. Since this is not a standard value we can use a 470 or 560 ohm resistor as this application is not critical of values. with the anode positive and the cathode negative. and the current through the resistor.4. so the current through then both is the same. as shown in the diagram.02 =500 ohms. collector. base. To calculate the value of the series resistor we need to know the diode forward voltage and current and its connections.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-9 LED circuit It needs to be fed from a DC supply. We now know the voltage across. The cathode lead is the one nearest a "flat" on the body. We will discuss two types of transistors: PNP and NPN transistors.02 amps). Both of these transistors has 3 pins: emitter. Since the voltage across the diode is 2 volts and the battery voltage is 12 volts. so be sure to check the packaging when purchasing. 0. From Ohm's Law we can now calculate the value of the resistor. signal modulation and many other functions. There aren't any standards for where and what order the physical pins are on the transistors. The diode is in series with the resistor.02 amps. Resistance = Volts divided by Amps = V/I = 10/0. then the voltage across the resistor is 12-2 = 10 volts. Transistors are used as switches and amplifiers. In our example it is 2 volts and 20mA (0. Figure 3-10 Transistors -15- . Transistors -A component used for switching and amplifying. 3. voltage stabilization. switching.
ensure that the IC (or the socket) is the correct way round and that no pins have been bent underneath the body. or may plug into sockets which have already been soldered into the board. If it is not flat then reflow the solder on the two pins pushing the IC flat. -16- . When satisfied. Integrated circuits (IC) . When soldering. They should be stored in conductive foam or wrapped in tin foil. the following must apply: The emitter is more positive than the base and the collector leads to the negative. or 16 pin dual in line (dil) chips. Inside them is a tiny piece of semiconductor(usually silicon) with large circuits built in. solder the remaining pins. 14. discharge yourself periodically by touching some metalwork which is earthed. Figure 3-12 Symbol of NPN Transistors 3.Basic of Electronics To allow electrons to flow through the collector and emitter of a PNP transistor.An overview of integrated circuits Integrated circuits (IC) are usually referred to as chips. When fitting new IC's it is often necessary to bend the pins in slightly. When handling them. Solder two diagonally opposite pins (say pin 1 and pin 5 in the diagram below) and check that the IC is flat on the board before soldering the rest. IC's can be soldered directly into printed circuit boards. such as a radiator. in order to fit it into the board (or socket). Figure 3-11 Symbol of PNP Transistors The NPN transistor is the opposite: The collector must be more positive than the base and the emitter leads to the negative. Some IC's are damaged by the static electricity which most people carry on their bodies. Most common are 8.5.
Comparators These IC's compare inputs and gives an output. A primary cell is discarded when its chemical -17- . connected in series. (logic gates will be discussed in a later section). you'll need one of those large reference books that have info on most of the IC's. • • • • • • 3. Batteries Batteries are assembled from cells. The general types of integrated circuits include: Figure 3-12 Symbol of IC • Logic circuits These IC's are basically decision makers.6. Operational Amplifiers These are amplifiers. Switches Switching IC's are also very much like the switching circuits of transistors. Works very much like transistor amplifier circuits. Audio amplifiers These are used to amplify audio. Other There are thousands of other types. A lot of IC's are made for a special purpose like digital sound recording. most contain logic gate circuits. In a cell chemical energy is converted into electrical energy. If not. Timers These are counting IC's used for circuits that counts or needs to keep track of time. Cells may be either PRIMARY or SECONDARY types.Basic of Electronics There are millions of different integrated circuits. Most IC's come with pinout information and how to use it. to increase the voltage available.
A secondary cell can be recharged. The most common primary cell is the zinc/carbon (Leclanche) as used in torches. Internal resistance increases as the cell ages.Basic of Electronics energy is exhausted. portable radios etc. All cells have INTERNAL RESISTANCE. Figure 3-14 Internal Resistance of Battery When current is taken from a battery. -18- . Figure 3-13 Symbol of Battery The zinc and carbon react with the ammonium chloride ELECTROLYTE to produce electricity. Nicads must be charged with a constant current charger. The most common secondary cells are the lead/acid and nickel/cadmium (nicad). This is not an actual resistor but a characteristic of the cell. The diagram shows that as the current taken increases the terminal voltage decreases. voltage is dropped across this internal resistance and the voltage at the battery terminals falls. The manganese dioxide absorbs hydrogen gas produced around the carbon rod which would insulate it from the electrolyte and stop the cell working. Lead acid batteries need a constant voltage charger.
If the primary voltage is 240 volts then the secondary voltage will be x 10 smaller = 24 volts. -19- . the moving lines of force will "cut" the turns of the second coil. This is called MUTUAL INDUCTION and forms the basis of the transformer. Primary voltage --------------------Secondary voltage Number of primary turns = ----------. With the 50 Hz AC mains supply . Battery voltages must therefore always be measured ON LOAD. then the primary must supply 24 watts. the output coil is the SECONDARY WINDING. 3. Assuming a perfect transformer. the lines of force move outwards from the coil. If the current is reduced. as the field moves out or in.e. As it does this.7.-----------------------Number of secondary turns For example. Transformer If you have read the page on ELECTROMAGNETISM then you will know that when a current is passed through a coil. The input coil is called the PRIMARY WINDING. this will happen 50 times a second. the lines of force move inwards. If the current is increased. This field is made up from lines of force and has the same shape as a bar magnet. i. (Watts = volts x amps). If it is a 240 volt primary then the current in it must be 0.1 amp. a voltage is induced in the second coil. the secondary will have half the primary voltage. If another coil is placed adjacent to the first coil then. the coil becomes surrounded by a magnetic field.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-15 Voltage-Current characteristics of Battery This is called POOR REGULATION. with the radio etc switched on and drawing current. It occurs in any type of power supply. The voltage induced in the secondary is determined by the TURNS RATIO. the power provided by the primary must equal the power taken by a load on the secondary. if the secondary has half the primary turns. If a 24 watt lamp is connected across a 24 volt secondary. Another example is if the primary has 5000 turns and the secondary has 500 turns. then the turns ratio is 10:1.
or in the other direction. the core is LAMINATED. Transformers are sometimes used for IMPEDANCE MATCHING. Transformers to work at higher frequencies have an iron dust core.Basic of Electronics To aid magnetic coupling between primary and secondary. Note that the transformer only works on AC which has a constantly changing current and moving field. the coils are wound on a metal CORE. or no core at all. called EDDY CURRENTS. into this core. DC has a steady current and therefore a steady field and there would be no induction. This is to prevent some types of interference being fed from the equipment down into the mains supply. This means that it is made up from metal sheets insulated from each other. Some transformers have an electrostatic screen between primary and secondary. Figure 3-15 Diagram of Transformers -20- . Since the primary would induce power.
Reactance increases with frequency and as the value of the inductance increases. -21- . This opposition is called INDUCTIVE REACTANCE. above 1 Mhz only a few turns.Basic of Electronics 3. They may be wound on tubular FORMERS or may be self supporting. The former may contain a metallic core up its centre. SPST = Single Pole. Inductor values of INDUCTANCE are measured in HENRIES. Switches Discusses the different configurations of switches. Inductors oppose the flow of ac current. 10 Mhz. Iron cores are used for frequencies below about 100 kHz.9. Most inductors have a low DC resistance since they are wound from copper wire. It simply connects and disconnect a circuit. SPDT = Single Pole. Above 100Mhz the core is usually air and the coil is self supporting. There are 3 commonly used configurations: SPST.8 Inductor Inductors are coils of wire. At low frequencies the inductor may have hundreds of turns. Double Throw This is a three terminal switch that connects one terminal to either of the other two. Ferrite cores are used for frequencies up to say. This section gives an overview of the contact configurations. Switches really don't need any introduction. SPDT. and DPDT. Single Throw This is a two terminal switch that opens and closes a circuit. Figure 3-16 Diagrams of Inductors 3.
3 This is a "2 pole on/off" switch which completely isolates the lamp from the supply in the off position. Fig. -22- . The dotted line indicates that S1a and S1b are part of the same switch "ganged" together and operate simultaneously. Fig. 1 Switches are used to open/close a circuit. Fig. Double Throw This is a six terminal switch that connects a pair of terminals to either of the other two pairs. This may be important if it is a high voltage supply. 2 S1 is a "single pole on/off" switch in the off position.Basic of Electronics DPDT = Double Pole.
If the current rises above this value it will melt. Fig. Occasionly they grow tired and fail. Again S1a and S1b are part of the same switch. With some equipment there is a very large surge of current for a short time at switch on. push to break". Fig. Figure 3-17 Fuse Configuration in circuit -23- . It can select 1 of 5 circuits. Either lamp 1 or lamp 2 is on. Therefore special antisurge fuses are fitted. If the fuse melts (blows) then there is an open circuit and no current can then flow thus protecting the equipment by isolating it from the power supply. 6 This is a "single pole 5 way" switch. If the fuse is black and silvery then it is likely that there is a dead short (very low resistance) somewhere. 7 This shows (1) a "normally closed. You can have 2p 5w. Fig. These can stand 10 times the rated current for 10 milliseconds. If the surge lasts longer than this the fuse will blow. Fig. The fuse must be able to carry slightly more than the normal operating current of the equipment to allow for tolerances and small current surges. 8 This is a "changeover" slide switch. 5 This is a "2 pole changeover" switch.Basic of Electronics Fig. Here are assorted switch types. The Fuse The fuse is a piece of wire which can carry a stated current. 4 This is a "single pole changeover" switch. Panel-Toggle-Make before break-Pneumatic-WaferProximity-Light activated-Toggle-Rotary Reed-Pull-Locking-Vane-Interlocking-RockerDimmer-Mercury-Tilt-Microswitch Thumbwheel-Key-Wafer-Slide-Float-Optical-FootThermal-Hall effect 3. When operated a-b opens and b-c closes. 3p 4w etc.10. (2) a "normally open. The unlit lamp is completely isolated from the supply. Always find out why the fuse blew before replacing it. push to make". (3) both used together to make a "changeover" switch. If a fuse is fitted to withstand this large current there would be no protection against faults which cause the current to rise slightly above the normal value.
1(one) is represented by a positive electrical value and 0(zero) is represented by no electricity at all.11. one or more inputs must be at a value of 1. all inputs must be at a value of 0. one or more of its inputs must be at a value of 0. • NOT gate To get an output of 1. Gates Gates are logic circuits. both inputs must be at a value of 1. -24- . This section describes the different types of gates and their symbols: • AND gate To get an output of 1. They take binary inputs and and gives out a binary result. • NOR gate To get an output of 1. This gate only has one input.Basic of Electronics 3. its input must be at a value of 0. • OR gate To get an output of 1. Logic IC's contain these and other types of gates. It is also known as an inverter circuit. • NAND gate To get an output of 1.
Using a lower impedance than the correct one can blow up your amplifier. The movement of the coil causes a cone. Figure 3-18 Diagrams of Speaker The two magnetic fields interact causing movement of the coil. This happens if the speaker leads are connected correctly. C1 and L1 are a low pass filter. Therefore two speakers are used. as in stereo systems. The loudspeaker is a TRANSDUCER converting one form of energy to another. Loudspeaker The most common type of loudspeaker is the MOVING COIL speaker. which is attached to the coil. a large one (a Woofer) for low frequencies.Basic of Electronics 3. The design of enclosures is very complicated. In the diagram. typically 4 or 8 ohms. to move back and forth. When a speech current is passed through the coil a varying magnetic field is generated by the coil. and a small one (a Tweeter) for high frequencies. This compresses and decompresses the air thereby generating sound waves. To ensure that the correct frequencies go to the desired speaker. they must be in phase. This means that they move out and in together. where a coil of wire is suspended in the magnetic field of a circular magnet.11. When using two speakers together. Speakers can be connected in series and parallel but the total impedance must match the amplifier impedance. -25- . (there is a page on FILTERS). Loudspeakers are mounted in enclosures (boxes). This must be matched to the output impedance of the amplifier (see the page on REACTANCE and IMPEDANCE). a Crossover Unit is used. Loudspeakers have Impedance. C2 and L2 are a high pass filter. Large speakers cannot reproduce high frequencies and small ones cannot reproduce low frequencies.
to form an electromagnet. Figure 3-20 Electromagnetic Relay The magnetised core attracts the iron armature. The armature is pivoted which causes it to operate one or more sets of contacts. by passing current through it. When the coil is energised. wound on an iron core.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-19 Woofer and Tweeter configuration 3.12. Electromagnetic relay The electromagnetic relay consists of a multi-turn coil. -26- . the core becomes temporarily magnetised. When the coil is de-energised the armature and contacts are released.
000.000 milli m 0.000.o.000.c and c.Basic of Electronics The coil can be energised from a low power source such as a transistor while the contacts can switch high powers such as the mains supply.000 mega M 1.000. The REED RELAY has a much faster operation than the relays described above.000.001 Ohms is the same as 1 picohm PREFIX SYMBOL MULTIPLICATION FACTOR -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------tera T 1. Value Multiplier In Electronics we use some very large and some very small values. There are 1. To make them easier to deal with we use MULTIPLIERS. Figure 3-20 Relay position The springsets (contacts) can be a mixture of n. Practice converting one to another.000.000.000 picofarad in 1 nanofarad. To prevent this a diode is connected across the coil. 3.13.000 kilo K 1.000. Relays can generate a very high voltage across the coil when switched off. The cathode of the diode is connected to the most positive end of the coil. Various coil operating voltages (ac and dc) are available.001 nano n 0. -27- .001 pico p 0.000.000.000.001 See that 1 microfarad is 1000 nanofarad. This can damage other components in the circuit.000.000 giga G 1.000.000 Hertz can be labelled 1 Terahertz.000.000. For example 1000. The relay can also be situated remotely from the control source. and 0.000. The actual contact points on the springsets are available for high current and low current operation.001 micro u 0.o n.000.
Basic of Electronics CIRCUIT SYMBOLS -28- .
Basic of Electronics -29- .
you must use this equation: Rt = (R1 * R2) / (R1 + R2) 4.Discusses the result of putting capacitors in series. Resistors in Parallel . What happens when resistors are placed side by side -.Discusses series circuits and the result of putting resistors in series.3.Basic of Electronics Chapter 4 Circuit Concepts • • • • Resistors in Series . So when we say "Resistors in series".2. So what is a series circuit? A series circuit means connecting components one after the other.1.Discusses Parallel circuits and the result of putting resistors in parallel.Discusses series circuits and the result of putting resistors in series.in other words. Resistors in Series . To calculate what the total resistance is. we mean connecting one resistor after the other: To find the TOTAL resistance. Capacitors in Parallel . Resistors in Parallel . Capacitors in Series -30- . in a parallel circuit? The result is the total resistance being lower than the lowest resistor. 4. simply add up the resistance of the resistors in the series circuit.Discusses the result of putting capacitors in parallel 4.Discusses Parallel circuits and the result of putting resistors in parallel. Capacitors in Series .
4pF. 3pF. To find the total capacitance.Discusses the result of putting capacitors in series.Basic of Electronics . and 5pF The total value is 2pF + 3pF + 4pF + 5pF = 14pF -31- .Discusses the result of putting capacitors in parallel Now if capacitors in series uses the same equation as resistors in parallel. The total capacitance in a capacitor series circuit is less than the lowest capacitor in the circuit. capacitors in series lowers the total capacitance. use the following equation: Ct = (C1 * C2) / (C1 + C2) Notice that it's the same equation as resistors in parallel Capacitors in Parallel . how do you find the total capacitance of capactors in parallel? Right! You just add it up! So if there are 4 capacitors in parallel and their values are: 2pF. Unlike resistors in series.
Discusses how to solder -32- . 5. Using Breadboards . Breadboards are used for testing and experimenting with electronic circuits. The blue strips shown in the illustration are usually used for connecting the batteries and the green strips are for the components. So whichever components connected to a certain strip are connected to eachother.1. there are many holes for plugging in components: The bread board has many strips of metal which run underneath the board that connects the component. They are very convenient since all you have to do is plug in the components. Oh the surface of a breadboard.Basic of Electronics Chapter 5 Skills in Electronics 5. The metal strips are laid out as shown below: Each strip is a connection.Introduces the breadboard.2. Soldering .
to solder the components onto the board. you can start soldering. Note that you'll probably want one unless you're the careful type and you're sure you won't burn up anything. Now. They are very hot (about 400°C) and will give you a nasty burn. -33- . Always return the soldering iron to its stand when not in use. Now that you have your circuit boards. Stick the component's leads through the proper holes and bend it so that it'll stay still. not above. The smoke formed as you melt solder is mostly from the flux and quite irritating. Wash your hands after using solder. you must tin the tip. Simply wait for the soldering iron to heat up. and wipe it with a wet sponge. Let the joint cool by itself. Put the soldering iron tip so that it's touching the lead and the copper at the same time. apply a coat of solder on the tip. even for a moment! Work in a well-ventilated area. Never put it down on your workbench. cut the leads at the proper length. Before you solder. your work. Then apply the solder on the lead (not on the tip of the soldering iron). what you need: • • • Soldering iron (around 25W) 60/40 solder and optionally a soldering iron holder. An ordinary plastic flex will melt immediately if touched by a hot iron and there is a serious risk of burns and electric shock.Basic of Electronics First a few safety precautions: Never touch the element or tip of the soldering iron. Take great care to avoid touching the mains flex with the tip of the iron. Solder contains lead which is a poisonous metal. Avoid breathing it by keeping you head to the side of. The iron should have a heatproof flex for extra protection.
Basic of Electronics -34- .
(This means putting a small blob of solder on the tip of the bit). It makes them difficult to remove. Avoid overheating. Allow the solder to run over the joint without moving the iron. Do not carry solder on the bit to the joint. Mount components so that value markings are visible. Heat the biggest part of the joint for 2-3 seconds. If you have taken too long it will have have solder spikes. Take precautions against the work moving. A dry joint is a poorly soldered one. to keep the bit clean.The process should take only 2-3 seconds. Heating the joint and applying the solder Use a damp sponge. All soldered joints should be easily removable. When using printed circuit boards avoid bending wires flat on the board. Spring component leads out just slightly. frequently. Remove the solder.This means a minimum of lead wrapping. A good joint is smooth and shiny. If the joint has moved during soldering it will be dull and crinkly. (use a small vice or sticky tape). Tin the bit for good heat conduction. Remove the iron. Hold the iron like a pen. PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT !!! -35- . The smoke you see is evaporating flux. which should normally clean the joint. Rest your hands on the workbench to steady them. The shape of the wire should be visible through the solder. Apply solder to the joint not to the iron. Tinning the bit.Basic of Electronics Cleaning the bit with a damp sponge. to prevent them falling out during soldering. Reflow soldering is tinning two pieces of wire separately and then reheating to join them together.
When you can produce good results proceed to the next part of the exercise. Components Chip Holders (DIL sockets) Pictures Reminders and Warnings Connect the correct way round by making sure the notch is at the correct end. (b) A bad joint is unevenly shaped. then you are taking too long to make the joint. Do NOT put the ICs (chips) in yet. A good joint is smooth and shiny. dull and crinkly in appearance. The solder must run along the copper track. Make the blobs all the same size and shape.(c) If there are spikes on the joint. Appropriate warnings are given in the table below. together with other advice which may be useful when soldering. 1 -36- . not stand on it like a bead. See (a).Basic of Electronics Don't allow the blobs to run into each other. Some components require special care when soldering. Many must be placed the correct way round and a few are easily damaged by the heat from soldering.
Connect the correct way round. yes. not c. Take care with polystyrene capacitors because they are easily damaged by heat.for cathode. single core wire Battery clips. it really is k. 2 Resistors 3 Small value capacitors (usually less than 1µF) 4 Electrolytic capacitors (1µF and greater) 5 Diodes 6 LEDs 7 Transistors Wire Links between 8 points on the circuit board. Easily damaged by heat. for cathode! The cathode is the short lead and there may be a slight flat on the body of round LEDs. These may be connected either way round. Connect the correct way round. Take care with germanium diodes (e.g. Connect the correct way round. Transistors have 3 'legs' (leads) so extra care is needed to ensure the connections are correct. Connect the correct way round.Basic of Electronics No special precautions are needed with resistors. Connect the correct way round. The diagram may be labelled a or + for anode and k or . this has no plastic coating and looks just like solder but it is stiffer. buzzers 9 and other parts with their own wires -37- . If there is no danger of touching other parts you can use tinned copper wire. They will be marked with a + or .near one lead. this is one solid wire which is plastic-coated. OA91) because they are easily damaged by heat. Use single core wire.
Connect the correct way round. It is often safer to cut the component leads and discard the component. Carefully insert ICs in their holders: make sure all the pins are lined up with the socket then push down firmly with your thumb. soldering iron and solder sucker (desoldering tool).pliers. Working on a double-sided PCB (where copper tracks are on both sides of the PCB) is more difficult and requires more care. In some cases desoldering braid is useful. Take great care to avoid damage.Basic of Electronics You should use stranded wire which is flexible and plasticcoated. There are two ways to remove the solder: -38- . Do not use single core wire because this will break when it is repeatedly flexed. Wires to parts off the circuit board. an assembled printed circuit board may be worth several hundred pounds. This should only take two or three seconds. Ensure the iron is tinned. Components cost a few pence. Leave ICs in their antistatic packaging until you need them. then desolder the leads individually. If the operation is unsuccessful resolder the joint and then try again.Check that all pins are loose on an integrated circuit. Heat up the joint to be desoldered until the solder runs. stranded wire 11 ICs (chips) DESOLDERING COMPONENTS Tools required . then earth your hands by touching a metal water pipe or window frame before touching the ICs. At some stage you will probably need to desolder a joint to remove or re-position a wire or component. relays. Ensure the iron bit is well tinned. cutters. Place the iron on top of the braid and allow the solder from the joint to run up the braid. Place the braid on top of the joint. including 10 switches. Ensure the joint is completely desoldered by wriggling the wire with a pair of pliers to check for freeness. Apply the solder sucker and remove the solder. variable resistors and loudspeakers. Many ICs are static sensitive.
Basic of Electronics 1. Cut off and discard the end of the wick coated with solder. The pump will need emptying occasionally by unscrewing the nozzle. With a desoldering pump (solder sucker) Set the pump by pushing the spring-loaded plunger down until it locks. As the solder melts most of it will flow onto the wick. Apply both the pump nozzle and the tip of your soldering iron to the joint. Then press the button on the pump to release the plunger and suck the molten solder into the tool. then the soldering iron. After removing most of the solder from the joint(s) you may be able to remove the wire or component lead straight away (allow a few seconds for it to cool). -39- . away from the joint. taking care to avoid burning yourself. 2. Repeat if necessary to remove as much solder as possible. Wait a second or two for the solder to melt. Remove the wick first. With solder remover wick (copper braid) Apply both the end of the wick and the tip of your soldering iron to the joint. If the joint will not come apart easily apply your soldering iron to melt the remaining traces of solder at the same time as pulling the joint apart.
Basic of Electronics Chapter 6 Safe Meter Usage Using an electrical meter safely and efficiently is perhaps the most valuable skill an electronics technician can master. the multimeter may become a source of danger when connected to a "live" circuit. resistance. both for the sake of their own personal safety and for proficiency at their trade. Multimeters are so named because they have the ability to measure a multiple of variables: voltage. It can be daunting at first to use a meter. however. and it is always best to proceed cautiously when using meters. Carelessness more than any other factor is what causes experienced technicians to have electrical accidents. and often many others. In the hands of someone ignorant and/or careless. This concern is not unfounded. The most common piece of electrical test equipment is a meter called the multimeter. knowing that you are connecting it to live circuits which may harbor life-threatening levels of voltage and current. -40- . current.
Test leads are nothing more than specially-prepared wires used to connect the meter to the circuit under test. Of the two "V" settings and two "A" settings. this distinction in meter settings is an important one to bear in mind. and the tips of the probes are sharp. to measure DC than it uses to measure AC. The rotary selector switch (now set in the Off position) has five different measurement positions it can be set in: two "V" settings. internally. The parallel lines represent "DC" while the squiggly curve represents "AC. The meter uses different techniques. stiff pieces of wire: -41- .Basic of Electronics You will notice that the display of this meter is of the "digital" type: showing numerical values using four digits in a manner similar to a digital clock. and one setting in the middle with a funny-looking "horseshoe" symbol on it representing "resistance. you will notice that each pair is divided into unique markers with either a pair of horizontal lines (one solid. There are three different sockets on the multimeter face into which we can plug our test leads. and so it requires the user to select which type of voltage (V) or current (A) is to be measured. two "A" settings. one dashed). or a dashed line with a squiggly curve over it. The wires are coated in a color-coded (either black or red) flexible insulation to prevent the user's hands from contacting the bare conductors. Although we haven't discussed alternating current (AC) in any technical detail." The "V" of course stands for "voltage" while the "A" stands for "amperage" (current)." The "horseshoe" symbol is the Greek letter "Omega" (Ω). which is the common symbol for the electrical unit of ohms.
To see how this works. we'll set up the meter to measure DC voltage from a battery: -42- ." The red test lead plugs into either the red socket marked for voltage and resistance.Basic of Electronics The black test lead always plugs into the black socket on the multimeter: the one marked "COM" for "common. or the red socket marked for current. let's look at a couple of examples showing the meter in use. depending on which quantity you intend to measure with the multimeter. First.
a short-circuit will be formed. it is imperative that you not let the probe tips come in contact with one another while they are both in contact with their respective points on the circuit. and the selector switch has been set for DC "V". creating a spark and perhaps even a ball of flame if the voltage source is capable of supplying enough current! The following image illustrates the potential for hazard: -43- . If this happens.Basic of Electronics Note that the two test leads are plugged into the appropriate sockets on the meter for voltage. Now. the test leads will remain plugged in the same sockets. we'll take a look at an example of using the multimeter to measure AC voltage from a household electrical power receptacle (wall socket): The only difference in the setup of the meter is the placement of the selector switch: it is now turned to AC "V". Since we're still measuring voltage. In both of these examples.
so when using a multimeter as a safety check device you should always check for the presence of both AC and DC. when checking for the presence of hazardous voltage.Basic of Electronics This is just one of the ways that a meter can become a source of hazard if used improperly. as they are set for one or the other when checking for voltage or current. you should be sure to check all pairs of points in question. but the selector switch will need to be turned until it points to the "horseshoe" resistance symbol. Also. the meter should properly display the resistance in ohms: -44- . The test leads will be kept plugged in the same sockets as for the voltage checks. As we have seen earlier. both AC and DC voltages and currents can be deadly. it must be remembered that digital multimeters usually do a good job of discriminating between AC and DC measurements. Touching the probes across the device whose resistance is to be measured. Using a multimeter to check for resistance is a much simpler task. even if you're not expecting to find both! Also.
solid connection between the probe tips (simulated by touching them together). faulty readings will result. it would read exactly zero: -45- . the meter may even be damaged by the external voltage. If the test leads had no resistance in them. If there is any additional source of voltage in the meter-lead-component-lead-meter loop to either aid or oppose the resistance-measuring current produced by the meter. it uses a small internal battery to generate a tiny current through the component to be measured. the meter shows almost zero Ω. The "resistance" mode of a multimeter is very useful in determining wire continuity as well as making precise measurements of resistance.Basic of Electronics One very important thing to remember about measuring resistance is that it must only be done on de-energized components! When the meter is in "resistance" mode. the resistance of that component can be determined and displayed. When there is a good. In a worse-case situation. By sensing how difficult it is to move this current through the component.
In the voltage-measuring mode (red lead plugged into the red "V" socket). or touching opposite ends of a broken wire. any additional resistance offered by the meter would impede the electron flow and alter the circuit's operation.Basic of Electronics If the leads are not in contact with each other. it is best to have the meter offer little or no resistance against the flow of electrons. there are many mega-ohms of resistance -46- . Thus.L." which stands for "open loop"): Another potential hazard of using a multimeter in its current-measuring ("ammeter") mode is failure to properly put it back into a voltage-measuring configuration before measuring voltage with it. The reasons for this are specific to ammeter design and operation. the meter will indicate infinite resistance (usually by displaying dashed lines or the abbreviation "O. When measuring circuit current by placing the meter directly in the path of current. the multimeter is designed to have practically zero ohms of resistance between the test probe tips when the red probe has been plugged into the red "A" (current-measuring) socket. Otherwise.
though. they are still no substitute for clear thinking and caution when using a multimeter. most multimeters have a warning feature by which they beep if ever there's a lead plugged in the "A" socket and the selector switch is set to "V". and only secondarily to protect the user from harm. such as in the case illustrated in the last image. because voltmeters are designed to have close to infinite resistance (so that they don't draw any appreciable current from the circuit under test). A multimeter can be used to check its own current fuse by setting the selector switch to the resistance position and creating a connection between the two red sockets like this: -47- . All good-quality multimeters contain fuses inside that are engineered to "blow" in the even of excessive current through them.Basic of Electronics between the test probe tips. the meter itself) from excessive damage. As convenient as features like these are. Like all overcurrent protection devices. The result -. these fuses are primarily designed to protect the equipment (in this case.to voltage-measuring mode. it's easy to spin the selector switch from the "A" to the "V" position and forget to correspondingly switch the position of the red test lead plug from "A" to "V".if the meter is then connected across a source of substantial voltage -.will be a short-circuit through the meter! To help prevent this. When switching a multimeter from current.
" (or whatever indication that model of multimeter uses to indicate no continuity). There is no substitute for regular practice with complex instruments such as these. So now that we've seen how to use a multimeter to measure voltage. what more is there to know? Plenty! The value and capabilities of this versatile test instrument will become more evident as you gain skill and familiarity using it. so feel free to experiment on safe.Basic of Electronics A good fuse will indicate very little resistance while a blown fuse will always show "O. The actual number of ohms displayed for a good fuse is of little consequence. so long as it's an arbitrarily low figure.L. -48- . and current. battery-powered circuits. resistance.
Zero ohms on the scale mean no resistance between test leads. Measuring Voltage A voltmeter measures potential of electricity in a units of volts. 7. just as a water flow meter would measure the amount of water flow. indicating that there is continuity path for the current to flow in a closed circuit. All voltmeters have a large internal resistance so that the current flow through the meter will not effect the circuit being tested. High-impedance meters.3. This means that on their DC voltage ranges they have a very high resistance (usually called input impedance) of 1M or more. Measuring Resistance An ohmmeter measures the resistance in ohms of a component or circuit section when no current is flowing through the circuit. current flows through the test leads and the difference in voltage (voltage drop) between the lead is measured as resistance. usually 10M. Caution: An ammeter must be installed in series with the circuit to measure the current flow in the circuit. and they are very unlikely to affect the circuit under test. such as across a battery. If a meter set to read amperes is connected in parallel.Basic of Electronics Chapter 7 Using Digital Multimeter for Measurement and Testing of Electronic Components Digital multimeter and digital volt-ohm-miliamperemeter are terms commonly used for electronic high-impedance test meter.2. the meter or the leads may be destroyed or the fuse will blow by the current available across the battery. 7. -49- .0 Ω = zero resistance OL = an open circuit (no current flows) 7. Infinity means no connection. An ohmmeter contains a battery. open and zero readings are as follows: 0. Measuring Amperes An ammeter measures the flow of current through a complete circuit in unit of amperes. The ammeter has to be installed in the circuit (in series) so that it can measure all the current flow in that circuit. is an open circuit.1. All digital meters contain a battery to power the display so they use virtually no power from the circuit under test. required for measuring computer circuits. when the leads are connected to a component. To summarize. A voltmeter is connected to a circuit in parallel.
Basic of Electronics -50- .
and very high in other direction. diode is faulty. as shown on 11. It has it's own switch position. either low or high in both directions. multimeter should sound a buzz which signals a short circuit.2. In the first case. diode's anode is connected to the positive probe of the meter (red probe). diode is ok if it's resistance value is very small in one. When we connect probes to each other. When we distance the probes. and in the other it should be very high. and display tells 0.1. Testing Electronic Components 7.2b).4. Digital instrument has another method to test the diodes. -51- .4. and a symbol for open circuit is displayed (this can be either 0L or 1). If the value is equal to or near equal. positive end of the diode is connected to one probe and negative end to the other probe (11.Basic of Electronics 7.1b. value should be very low. According to 11.2a). buzzing stops. and should be replaced. and then it is turned around (11. When the multimeter shows low value. Testing diode and Transistor with a multimeter When using an analog instrument to test a diode.
-52- . negative probe is connected to the base and you test collector and emitter with a positive probe.4b. only with switched probes. both cases should produce a high value on the meter.3b). positive probe is connected to base.4a they are high. and the negative probe is first at the collector and then emitter afterwards. Both diodes should be tested in described way. and if both of them are functional – transistor is functional as well. in both cases resistance should be low. and the anode is the end of the diode which is connected to probe A (red one).4c they are low. but the measurements should be opposite: on 11. After that.3a). since they act as two connected diodes. and on 11. Then we rotate the diode and connect it again (11. one of the two measurements would have shown a value which represents a minimum voltage that could be conducted through the diode (between 400mV and 800mV). According to 11. Transistors are tested in a similar fashion.Basic of Electronics Now we conenct probes to the diode (11. When testing PNP transistors. you do the same thing. Diode is faulty if you hear a buzz (closed circuit) or some value which represents infinity. all steps are the same. If the measured diode was ok.
Transformers and coils Grid transofrmers are tested by measuring the resistance of the copper wire on the primary and secondary coil. Many modern day digital multimeters have a tool for direct transistor check. where the principle of inverse relations is still in place.Basic of Electronics If you test transistors using a digital instrument.4. transistor is plugged into specified slot according to it's type (PNP or NPN) and the switch on the instrument is brought into position with a hFE marking.5. even to kiloohms (in low power transformers).8mm will do fine) should be soldered to transistor's pins and then plugged into the instrument. As displayed on 11. All principles remain the same as with transformers.5. When the positive end of an electrolithic capacitor is connected to a positive probe of an analog instrument. a special plug where low and medium power transistors fit nicely. Since the primary coil has more curls than the secondary one. Capacitors DC capacitors should produce an infinite value on the instrument. for example. it's resistance is higher. transistor BC140 is tested. If. it is a certain sign that the coil is either poorly connected or the curls are disconnected at some point.3. as displayed on 11. In case an instrument shows an infinite value. this means that the collector current is 74 times higher than the base current. 7.4.4. and it's value lays in range between several tens of ohms (in high power transofrmers) to several hundreds of ohms. Each diode should produce a value between 400mV and 800mV. display shows a value which represents the current amplification coefficient. Coils can be tested in the same way as transformers – through their resistance. and a -53- . process remains similar to the one with diodes. and the display shows 74. and is wound using a thinner wire. high power means low resistance. Eexceptions are electrolithic and very high value block capacitors. There is. 7. In case transistor works. Infinite resistance still means disconnected coil. In case when there is a need to test high power transistors. Secondary resistance is lower and is in range between several ohms to several tens of ohms. thin wires (0.
(Even small capacitance components get charged while testing. With this said. Other Semiconductor Devices To test diodes using this circuit. Potentiometers To test a potentiometer.4. in the opposite direction. black on cathode). On the other hand. or a variable resistor. and turning the rotor. and the meter should show those values. Electret microphones don't produce the noise.6 Speakers. 7. Needle should point infinity at all times. so the needle doesn't have the time to move. whole diode acts as a low value resistor.7. or a pot. Of course. which goes even to 20%. 7. speaker is broken. it is worth mentionig that the capacitors have considerably wider tolerance than resistors.4. If there is no noise. There are digital instruments that have the ability to measure capacitance. (“Noisy” pot can be repaired using a special spray. and the needle's movement is the charge stored in the component being discharged. needle jumps to the lowest value and then gradually comes back towards infinity. not much of attention is being paid to the value shown on the actual instrument. we fall back to the diode theory of operation: when anode is positive comparing to the cathode (red probe on anode. or oil or even a graphite pencil. which simplifies the process to comparing the value on the capacitor to the one on the display. sound is lower because in that direction diode acts as a high value resistor. headphones and microphones When testing speakers.4. And another source of trouble could be the built-in FET amplifier. their variable coil has either 4 or 8Ohms in most cases. which means that speaker sound is higher than usual. but their discharge time is very short. -54- . but this is not a good solution since it is weak and short-lived. process is rather simple – you connect the component to probes of an ohm-meter and turn the shaft.5. speakers would produce loud noise or no sound at all while pot is being turned. any other value means that the component is faulty. this behavior should be linear – jumps and twitches in values mean that the component is not working as supposed to. When using an analog instrument on the speakers. because by only connecting the probes there should be a short noise heard. Same goes for headphones and dynamic microphones.4. This is a proof that the capacitor is ok. and should be practiced only if there is no replacement for that potentiometer) 7. because any other value is a certain signal that the plates of the rotor and stator are connected which means that the component doesn't work. Testing process is shown on 12.) Variable capacitors are tested by connecting an ohm-meter to them.Basic of Electronics negative end to a negative probe. If that component was to be used in some audio amplifier. and values should do what component's name says – vary.
We displayed graphically the method of testing photo sensitive components on 12. if there is no music now. As you can see. transistor is faulty if speaker remains silent in the first two measurements. So. and the other one is connected to transistor's emitter or diode's cathode or the other resistor's side and some kind of sound should be heard from the speaker. or if it “plays” in one of the second two measurements. If both diodes are functional. probe A is connected to the base. everything is in functional order. if the transistor is ok.5. If this continues when the component is shadowed using your palm. and then probe B is connected first to the emitter. In both cases.Basic of Electronics DC transistor acts in the same fashion as two connected diodes (11. “music” would have been heard. No Light – No Music). or diode's anode or one side of the photo resistor. everything is in order.4a). transistor is functional as well as shown on 12. We then switch probe connections. -55- . and then to the collector. One principle that is applicable when testing the photo resistors. A goes where B was connected to and vice versa. which is shown on 12.6. Probe A is connected to the collector of the transistor.7. FET testing is done in similar fashion as testing the bipolar transistors. photo transistors and diodes is NL-NM (or.
Base rule is: if component is intended to conduct electricity. When testing different resistors. then music would have not been heard. With transformers with several secondary coils there is a possibility to find beginning and the end of each of them. like capacitors. coils. like different electro motors. or open switches. headphones. So with some experience using this instrument on various resistors it will be possible to tell the resistance of the resistor in question from only the generated sound. transformers. transformers and such conduct electricity. speakers. or two copper wires on the circuit board which shouldn't be connected. -56- .Basic of Electronics 7.4. so absence of sound while testing tells of some coil connection failure. Components which have coils in them. fuses. but your nerd level will certainly rise sky high if you are able to tell resistor's value from bare sound. closed switches. This may be easier and more accurately done using regular ohmmeter on your multimeter. If component doesn't conduct electricity. This is the case with resistors.8. And from the sound frequency one is possible to tell which coil is primary and which is secondary. it is apparent that different resistance values give different output sound. sound will be heard. Checking other components Many other components may be tested using this instrument.
where higher values give longer sound time. especially the larger ones. Length of playing depends on the capacitance of the component. which allows for a crude approximation of the component's capacitance.Basic of Electronics Functional capacitor will generate no music. Tone generated by connecting these capacitors to the instrument will change in level and frequency and fade until completely off when capacitor is discharged. -57- . An exception are electrolithic and block capacitors.
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