This section provides overview, applications, and principles of diode modules. Also, please take a look at the list of 36 diode module manufacturers and their company rankings.
A diode module is a semiconductor rectifier device that is used when you want to have a switching mechanism in response to an input signal in a certain circuit.
Generally, diode modules are often incorporated as relay components in circuit design, but thyristors and triacs are similar in their behavior.
Depending on the process you want to implement, you can control the output you want to obtain for various inputs by using these three types of modules that provide different outputs in response to input signals.
Diode modules are used in circuit design because they act as a kind of switch and can control the flow of current in only one direction in a circuit.
The diode can also be used to convert AC to DC because the current from the AC power source can be taken out in only one direction. Therefore, by inserting a diode in front of a device that operates on a DC power supply, the AC power supply can be used as if it were a DC power supply.
The internal structure of a diode consists of alternating layers of n-type and p-type semiconductors, which conduct when voltage is applied from the anode side to the cathode side.
On the other hand, when voltage is applied in the opposite direction, charge moves away from the internal n- and p-type semiconductors, resulting in no current flow. This characteristic can be used as a transmission switch for electric circuits in one direction.
Incidentally, there are also modules in which a gate terminal is added to the p-type semiconductor part of one of the diodes called a thyristor, which will not conduct unless a positive bias is applied from the anode side to the cathode side in the circuit and a gate current flows.
Once gate current flows, the module will conduct just like a diode, and will continue to conduct until the next time the anode-to-cathode bias becomes negative or the gate current becomes zero.
Thyristors conduct only in one bias direction, but triacs with thyristors installed in both directions are used when it is desired to operate while the gate current is flowing against a bias in both directions.
There are various types of diodes depending on their properties. The following is a list of some of the most common types.
Also called silicon diodes. They are used in power supply circuits and protection circuits by taking advantage of their ability to conduct electricity in only one direction. A well-known example is a diode bridge consisting of four rectifier diodes.
This type of diode is used in voice communications such as radios, taking advantage of the property of low forward voltage drop in a low current region (around 0.1 mA) to extract audio signals from radio waves (called detection). In the past, germanium diodes were often used. However, they are very expensive and are now being replaced by Schottky barrier diodes.
Also called Zener diodes. They are used in overvoltage protection circuits by utilizing the Zener phenomenon, in which electricity flows at a constant voltage when a voltage is applied in the reverse direction.
Photodiodes are used in sensors, optical communications, etc., utilizing the property that an electric current and voltage are generated when light is received at the PN junction. They are used in solar cells, in devices that read laser light reflected from uneven surfaces on DVDs, and in the receiving part of TV remote controls.
Also called light-emitting diodes or LEDs, these diodes are used as light sources by utilizing the property of holes and electrons to combine into energy when current flows through the PN junction.
Like diodes, power modules are elements used in power supply circuits. This section describes the difference between a diode module and a power module.
Power modules also perform switching and rectification, but they are used in products that require high voltage and high power. Familiar applications include inverters that control the speed of motors in home appliances, automobiles, and trains. As a response to energy conservation, the improvement of the efficiency of power devices that handle high voltage and high power is attracting attention from all over the world.
*Including some distributors, etc.
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