A Zener diode is a particular type of diode that, unlike a normal one, allows current to flow not only from its anode to its cathode, but also in the reverse direction, when the so-called “Zener voltage” is reached. Zener diodes have a highly doped p-n junction. Normal diodes will also break down with a reverse voltage but the voltage and sharpness of the knee are not as well defined as for a Zener diode. Also normal diodes are not designed to operate in the breakdown region, but Zener diodes can reliably operate in this region. The device was named after Clarence Melvin Zener, who discovered the Zener effect. Zener reverse breakdown is due to electron quantum tunnelling caused by a high strength electric field. However, many diodes described as “Zener” diodes rely instead on avalanche breakdown. Both breakdown types are used in Zener diodes with the Zener effect predominating under 5.6 V and avalanche breakdown above.
What is Photodiode? A photodiode is a semiconductor device that converts light into an electrical current. The current is generated when photons are absorbed in the photodiode. A small amount of current is also produced when no light is present. Photodiodes may contain optical filters, built-in lenses, and may have large or small surface areas. Photodiodes usually have a slower response time as their surface area increases. The common, traditional solar cellused to generate electric solar power is a large area photodiode.
What is a Tunnel diode? A tunnel diode or Esaki diode is a type of semiconductor that is capable of very fast operation, well into the microwave frequency region, made possible by the use of the quantum mechanical effect called tunneling. It was invented in August 1957 by Leo Esaki, Yuriko Kurose and Takashi Suzuki when they were working at Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo, now known as Sony. In 1973 Esaki received the Nobel Prize in Physics, jointly with Brian Josephson, for discovering the electron tunneling effect used in these diodes. Robert Noyceindependently came up with the idea of a tunnel diode while working for William Shockley, but was discouraged from pursuing it.
A light-emitting diode (LED) is a two-lead semiconductor light source. It is a p–n junction diode that emits light when activated. When a suitable voltage is applied to the leads, electrons are able to recombine with electron holes within the device, releasing energy in the form of photons. This effect is called electroluminescence, and the color of the light (corresponding to the energy of the photon) is determined by the energy band gap of the semiconductor. LEDs are typically small (less than 1 mm2) and integrated optical components may be used to shape the radiation pattern.
Whats a Resistor? A resistor is a passive two-terminal electrical component that implements electrical resistance as a circuit element. In electronic circuits, resistors are used to reduce current flow, adjust signal levels, to divide voltages, bias active elements, and terminate transmission lines, among other uses. High-power resistors that can dissipate many watts of electrical power as heat, may be used as part of motor controls, in power distribution systems, or as test loads for generators.
In electronics, a diode is a two-terminal electronic component that conducts primarily in one direction (asymmetric conductance); it has low (ideally zero) resistance to the current in one direction, and high (ideally infinite) resistance in the other.
What is a Capacitor? A capacitor is a passive two-terminal electrical component that stores electrical energy in an electric field. The effect of a capacitor is known as capacitance. While capacitance exists between any two electrical conductors of a circuit in sufficiently close proximity, a capacitor is specifically designed to provide and enhance this effect for a variety of practical applications by consideration of size, shape, and positioning of closely spaced conductors, and the intervening dielectric material. A capacitor was therefore historically first known as an electric condenser.