Understanding the Basic Aspects of Electronic Components
If you are not sure what an electrical component is rest assured, you are not alone. For those of us who love our devices, but have no idea how they work, sit back, relax and get ready to learn! Electronic components are the meat and potatoes of the electronic devices we use every day and can’t live without. They are not flashy and are usually quite easy to overlook. However, without them, we would literally be back in the dark ages. Today we are going to discuss some of the most basic electronic components. Some examples include parts like resistors, capacitors, LEDs, transistors, and integrated circuits. So, let’s get started with the basics.
Resistors have been named for their function, resisting the current. The resistor is responsible for managing the volts and current in nearly any device that requires electricity. It is the resistor that allows your device to continually operate without overheating or worse. By controlling the voltage, it allows just the right amount of electrical current that is needed to operate the device, if it did not do this, then the device would receive too much electrical current and then overheat or in technical terms fry.
Capacitors are used to store an electronic charge for a small period which is released when the charge is needed. The capacitor will release the stored-up charge when there is a disruption in the circuit of the device resulting in the need for additional power to keep it running. Kind of like a backup battery, or you can think of it in terms of a generator. When there is a blackout, facilities or homes that are equipped with a backup generator will not be left in the dark, the generator will save the day by providing electricity to the building.
LEDs (Limiting Emitting Diode)
Although this sounds like something that Luke Skywalker would use, LEDs are routinely used. LEDs are used to provide light. That little light that comes on when your cell phone is charging or the power light on your personal computer is the LEDs in action!
Transistors are a little more difficult to wrap your mind around. They are made of three terminals;
- Base: Voltage goes through first, it makes the collector “turn on”
- Collector: Receive voltage from base has a positive charge
- Emitter: Receives voltage from collector has a negative charge
They work together as a switch to turn the circuit “on”.
An integrated circuit is a tiny component that may contain some of the components you have just learned about. They are the cornerstone of the devices we know and love ranging from cell phones to our home and work personal computers. Without them, we would not be in the age of technology that we currently enjoy!
So, there you have it! Your first lesson in the basic aspects of electronic components is now complete! We hope you have found this information valuable and informative.