Active components are an essential part of electronics and are used in a variety of applications. These components can amplify, convert or control electrical signals. Unlike passive components, such as resistors and capacitors, active components can generate, amplify or modify energy. Some of the most common active components are transistors, integrated circuits, operational amplifiers and digital-to-analogue converters. The use of active devices allows us to design complex electronic circuits and perform a variety of functions, from simple circuits like amplifiers to complex systems like computers and other electronic devices.
What are active components?
Active devices are electronic components that can convert or amplify an electrical current into another electrical signal. An example of an active component is a transistor, which can act as a switch or amplifier. Other examples are integrated circuits (ICs), operational amplifiers (op-amps) and digital-to-analogue converters (DACs). In contrast, passive components are resistors, capacitors and inductors, which do not generate or amplify energy, but can only influence the electrical current.
Is an LED an active component?
Yes, an LED (light-emitting diode) can be called an active component because it can convert an electric current into light energy. An LED consists of a semiconductor material that, when a voltage is applied, has an electronic superposition that leads to the emission of light. In order to function as an active component, an LED must be operated at a certain voltage and current to produce the light.
Which electronic components are active components?
Some of the most common active electronic components are:
Transistors: These components can be used as switches or amplifiers. There are different types of transistors, such as bipolar transistors (BJT) and field-effect transistors (FET).
Integrated circuits (ICs): These devices often contain several active components, such as transistors, resistors and capacitors, integrated on a small chip. Examples of ICs are operational amplifiers (op-amps), timers, flip-flops and microcontrollers.
Operational amplifiers (op-amps): These components act as amplifiers and are found in many electronic circuits.
Digital-to-analogue converters (DACs): These components convert digital signals into analogue signals and vice versa.
Thyristors: These components can be used as switches or regulators.
LED diodes: These components convert electrical energy into light energy.
However, this is not a complete list of all active components, there are many other types of active components used in electronics.