# 8.

VARIOUS CHARACTERISTICS OF CLASS-B AMPLIFIERS
Let us consider a push-pull type class-B amplifier that is biased at its cutoff point. Let RL be the load resistance and β be the common-emitter current gain. If we assume that β is large in order to keep the development simple, then α is unity. Since at any given time only one transistor conducts, the load current is the emitter current. For α = 1, the collector current is also equal to the emitter current. The ac load line passes through the cutoff point and its intercept on the current axis (yaxis) yields the maximum possible collector (emitter or load) current that can exist when the saturation voltage is zero. Let us denote this current as IACM. Then IACM is

I ACM =

VCC RL

(8.1)

iC I ACM I O ( MAX ) I O ( AVG )
Time

iC

Q-Point

VCC

v CE v CE

Time

Figure 8.1: Load current and the corresponding collector-to-emitter voltage When the input signal reaches its positive peak value, the collector current in the NPN transistor also reaches at its positive peak value ( I O (MAX)). Its collector-to-emitter voltage is at its minimum as shown in Figure 8.1. Note that I O (MAX) is zero when the input signal is zero and I O (MAX) can be as high as IACM. Our aim is to determine the maximum value of I O (MAX) that results in the maximum power dissipated by the transistor.
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May 7, 2002

we can use (8. BG/PA2/08 58 May 7.4) and equating it to zero.2) (8.6) PT1( MAX ) = This equation can be simplified with the help of (8.5) As is evident from Figure 8. Differentiating (8. If the total power dissipated by the two transistors is known.We can express the power input and the power output per transistor as PS1 = I O ( AVG ) VCC = PO1 = 1 2 I O ( MAX ) R L 4 1 I O ( MAX ) VCC π (8.6) and can be written as PT1( MAX ) 2 VCC 1 = 2 I ACM VCC = 2 π π RL (8.4). Consequently.4) The only variable in the above equation is the maximum load current IO(MAX) corresponding to the maximum input signal. the total power input is 2 PS1 and the total power output is 2 PO1. the power dissipated by each transistor is PT1 = PS1 − PO1 = 1 1 2 I O ( MAX ) VCC − I O ( MAX ) R L π 4 (8.7) This equation yields the maximum power that is dissipated by a single transistor used in the pushpull configuration. The total maximum power dissipated by the two transistors is twice as much as that for the single transistor. IACM is the theoretically maximum value of the collector (load) current that can exist when the saturation voltage is zero and it is given as I ACM = Substituting in (8. we obtain I O ( MAX ) = 2 VCC 2 = I ACM π RL π (8.7) to determine the maximum collector current per transistor that it can safely deliver to the load. we need to differentiate the above equation with respect to I O (MAX) and set it to zero.1. 2002 . we get VCC RL 2 1 I ACM VCC − 2 I 2 R L ACM 2 π π (8. This places the limit upon the minimum load resistance and the maximum output current.5) in (8. In order to determine the maximum value of the load current that yields maximum power dissipation in the transistor.3) Note that for the push-pull amplifier.

11 0.08 0.9) (8.04 0.15 0 0 0. 2002 .01 0.13 0.75 0.05 0.2 1.1 0.15 Figure 8.10) PO π I O ( MAX ) R L = PS 4 VCC To sketch the waveforms using MathCAD.8) (8.2 below.06 0.5 1.12 0. let us assume that RL = 100 Ω and VCC = 15 V. and the efficiency of the push-pull amplifier. total power output.6 0.02 0.Let us sketch the total power supplied by the two dc sources.9 PS ( I ) 0.3 0.14 0. The waveforms are given in Figure 8.35 1.05 0.2a: Power supplied by both the dc sources (in watts) as a function of maximum collector current (in mA) BG/PA2/08 59 May 7.45 0. Total power supplied by the dc supply: Total power output: The efficiency of the amplifier: PS = 2 PS1 = PO = 2 PO1 = η= 2 I O ( MAX ) VCC π 1 2 I O ( MAX ) R L 2 (8.07 I 0. total power dissipated by the two transistors.03 0.15 A R L 100 1.09 0. Note that the theoretical maximum value of the collector current is I ACM = VCC 15 = = 0.

5 0.11 0.1 0.05 0.02 0.9 PO ( I ) 0.2 0.35 0.12 0.02 0.45 0.15 Figure 8.2(b): Output power (in watts) as a function of maximum collector current (in mA) 0.03 0.15 0.2c: Power dissipated by both the transistors (in watts) as a function of maximum collector current (in mA).3 PT ( I ) 0.6 0.11 0.14 0.07 I 0. 2002 .08 0.75 0.15 Figure 8.05 0.05 0.09 0.13 0.12 0.03 0.13 0.04 0.4 0.1 0.06 0.14 0.1.04 0. BG/PA2/08 60 May 7.01 0.5 1.01 0.1 0.45 0.15 0 0 0.25 0.07 I 0.35 1.09 0.06 0.2 1.08 0.05 0 0 0.3 0.

This result can now be verified from the waveform shown in Figure 8.03 0.7 0.9 0.15 Figure 8.04 0. From (8.6 η ( I) 0.12 0.13 0.4 0.5) we obtain that the efficiency is 0.3 0.10) and (8.08 0.05 0.1 0.11 0. BG/PA2/08 61 May 7.02 0.5 0.09 0.2d above.1 0 0 0.06 0. 2002 .2d: Efficiency of the push-pull amplifier as a function of maximum collector current (in mA).8 0.2 0.5 or 50% at the point of maximum power dissipation by each transistor.14 0.1 0.07 I 0.01 0.