555 timer IC

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555 timer
Signetics NE555N.JPG
Signetics NE555 in 8-pin DIP package
Type Active, Integrated circuit
Invented Hans Camenzind
First production1971
Electronic symbol
NE555 Bloc Diagram.svg
Internal block diagram [1]

The 555 timer IC is an integrated circuit (chip) used in a variety of timer, pulse generation, and oscillator applications. The 555 can be used to provide time delays, as an oscillator, and as a flip-flop element. Derivatives provide two (556) or four (558) timing circuits in one package. [2]

Contents

Introduced in 1972 [3] by Signetics, [4] the 555 is still in widespread use due to its low price, ease of use, and stability. It is now made by many companies in the original bipolar and in low-power CMOS technologies. As of 2003, it was estimated that 1 billion units were manufactured every year. [5] The 555 is the most popular integrated circuit ever manufactured. [6] [7]

History

Die of the first 555 chip (1971) Die of the first 555 chip.jpg
Die of the first 555 chip (1971)

The IC was designed in 1971 by Hans R. Camenzind under contract to Signetics, later acquired by Philips Semiconductors, now NXP. [3]

In 1962, Camenzind joined PR Mallory's Laboratory for Physical Science in Burlington, Massachusetts. [5] He designed a pulse-width modulation (PWM) amplifier for audio applications; [8] however, it was not successful in the market because there was no power transistor included. He became interested in tuners such as a gyrator and a phase-locked loop (PLL). He was hired by Signetics to develop a PLL IC in 1968. He designed an oscillator for PLLs such that the frequency did not depend on the power supply voltage or temperature. Signetics subsequently laid off half of its employees due to a recession; development on the PLL was thus frozen. [9]

Camenzind proposed the development of a universal circuit based on the oscillator for PLLs and asked that he develop it alone, borrowing equipment from Signetics instead of having his pay cut in half. Other engineers argued the product could be built from existing parts; however, the marketing manager approved the idea. Among 5xx numbers that were assigned for analog ICs, the part number "555" was chosen. [5] [9]

Camenzind also taught circuit design at Northeastern University in the morning attending the university himself at night working toward a Master's degree in Business Administration. [10] The first design for the 555 was reviewed in the summer of 1971. Assessed to be without error, it proceeded to layout design. A few days later, Camenzind got the idea of using a direct resistance instead of a constant current source finding later that it worked. The change decreased the required 9 pins to 8 so the IC could be fit in an 8-pin package instead of a 14-pin package. This revised design passed a second design review with the prototype completed in October 1971. The 9-pin copy had been already released by another company founded by an engineer who attended the first review and retired from Signetics; that firm withdrew its version soon after the 555 was released. The 555 timer was manufactured by 12 companies in 1972 and it became a best selling product. [9]

Part name

It has been falsely hypothesized that the 555 got its name from the three 5  resistors within the bipolar IC. [11] Hans Camenzind has stated that the part number was arbitrary, [5] thus it was simply a coincidence they matched. The "NE" and "SE" prefix letters of the original Signetic parts numbers, NE555 and SE555, were temperature designations for analog chips, where "NE" was commercial temperature family and "SE" was military temperature family.

Design

Depending on the manufacturer, the standard 555 package includes 25 transistors, 2 diodes and 15 resistors on a silicon chip installed in an 8-pin dual in-line package (DIP-8). [12] Variants available include the 556 (a DIP-14 combining two complete 555s on one chip), [13] and 558 / 559 (both a DIP-16 combining four reduced-functionality timers on one chip). [2]

The NE555 parts were commercial temperature range, 0 °C to +70 °C, and the SE555 part number designated the military temperature range, −55 °C to +125 °C. These were available in both high-reliability metal can (T package) and inexpensive epoxy plastic (V package) packages. Thus the full part numbers were NE555V, NE555T, SE555V, and SE555T.

Low-power CMOS versions of the 555 are also available, such as the Intersil ICM7555 and Texas Instruments LMC555, TLC555, TLC551. [14] [15] [16] [17] CMOS timers use significantly less power than bipolar timers; CMOS timers also cause less supply noise than bipolar version when the output switches states.[ citation needed ]

Internal schematic

The internal block diagram and schematic of the 555 timer are highlighted with the same color across all three drawings to clarify how the chip is implemented: [2]

Pinout

The typical pinout of the 555 and 556 IC packages are as follows: [2] [1] [18]

555 Pin#556 Pin#Pin namePin directionPin purpose [2]
17GNDPowerGround supply: this pin is the ground reference voltage (zero volts).
26, 8TRIGInputTrigger: when the voltage at this pin falls below 12 of CONT pin voltage (13VCC except when CONT is driven by an external signal), the OUT pin goes high and a timing interval starts. As long as this pin continues to be kept at a low voltage, the OUT pin will remain high.
35,9OUTOutputOutput: this is a push-pull (P.P.) output that is driven to either a low state (ground supply at GND pin) or a high state (positive supply at VCC pin minus approximately 1.7 Volts). (Note: For CMOS timers, the high state is driven to VCC.) When bipolar timers are used in applications where the output drives a TTL input, a 100 to 1000 pF decoupling capacitor may need to be added to prevent double triggering. [2]
44,10RESETInputReset: a timing interval may be reset by driving this pin to GND, but the timing does not begin again until this pin rises above approximately 0.7 Volts. This pin overrides TRIG (trigger), which overrides THRES (threshold). In most applications this pin is not used, thus it should be connected to VCC to prevent electrical noise causing a reset.
53,11CONTInputControl (or Control Voltage): this pin provides access to the internal voltage divider (23VCC by default). By applying a voltage to the CONT input one can alter the timing characteristics of the device. In most applications this pin is not used, thus a 10 nF decoupling capacitor (film or C0G) should be connected between this pin and GND to ensure electrical noise doesn't affect the internal voltage divider. [2] This control pin input can be used to build an astable multivibrator with a frequency-modulated output.
62,12THRESInputThreshold: when the voltage at this pin is greater than the voltage at CONT pin (23VCC except when CONT is driven by an external signal), then the timing (OUT high) interval ends.
71,13DISCHOutputDischarge: this is an open-collector (O.C.) output (CMOS timers are open-drain), which can be used to discharge a capacitor between intervals, in phase with output.
814VCCPowerPositive supply: the guaranteed voltage range of bipolar timers is typically 4.5 to 15 Volts (some timers are spec'ed for up to 16 Volts or 18 Volts), though most will operate as low as 3 Volts. (Note: CMOS timers have a lower minimum voltage rating, which varies depending on the part number.) See the supply min and max columns in the derivatives table. For bipolar timers, a decoupling capacitor is required because of current surges during output switching. [2]

Modes

The 555 IC has the following operating modes:

  1. Astable (free-running) mode – the 555 can operate as an electronic oscillator. Uses include LED and lamp flashers, pulse generation, logic clocks, tone generation, security alarms, pulse position modulation and so on. The 555 can be used as a simple ADC, converting an analog value to a pulse length (e.g., selecting a thermistor as timing resistor allows the use of the 555 in a temperature sensor and the period of the output pulse is determined by the temperature). The use of a microprocessor-based circuit can then convert the pulse period to temperature, linearize it and even provide calibration means.
  2. Monostable (one-shot) mode – in this mode, the 555 functions as a "one-shot" pulse generator. Applications include timers, missing pulse detection, bounce-free switches, touch switches, frequency divider, capacitance measurement, pulse-width modulation (PWM) and so on.
  3. Bistable (flip-flop) mode – the 555 operates as a SR flip-flop. Uses include bounce-free latched switches.
  4. Schmitt Trigger (inverter) mode - the 555 operates as a schmitt trigger inverter gate which converts a noisy input into a clean digital output.

Astable

Schematic of a 555 timer in astable mode. 555 Astable Diagram.svg
Schematic of a 555 timer in astable mode.
Waveform in astable mode NE555 Astable Waveforms.svg
Waveform in astable mode
Astable Mode Examples With Common Values
Frequency C R1 R2 Duty cycle
0.1 Hz (+0.048%)100uF8.2K68K52.8%
1 Hz (+0.048%)10uF8.2K68K52.8%
10 Hz (+0.048%)1uF8.2K68K52.8%
100 Hz (+0.048%)100nF8.2K68K52.8%
1 kHz (+0.048%)10nF8.2K68K52.8%
10 kHz (+0.048%)1nF8.2K68K52.8%
100 kHz (+0.048%)100pF8.2K68K52.8%

In astable configuration, the 555 timer puts out a continuous stream of rectangular pulses having a specific frequency. The astable configuration is implemented using two resistors, and , and one capacitor . In this configuration, the control pin is not used, thus it is connected to ground through a 10 nF decoupling capacitor to shunt electrical noise. The threshold and trigger pins are connected to the capacitor , thus they have the same voltage. Initially, the capacitor is not charged, thus the trigger pin receives zero voltage which is less than third of the supply voltage. Consequently, the trigger pin causes the output to go high and the internal discharge transistor to go to cut-off mode. Since the discharge pin is no longer short circuited to ground, the current flows through the two resistors, and , to the capacitor charging it. The capacitor starts charging until the voltage becomes two-thirds of the supply voltage. At this instance, the threshold pin causes the output to go low and the internal discharge transistor to go into saturation mode. Consequently, the capacitor starts discharging through till it becomes less than third of the supply voltage, in which case, the trigger pin causes the output to go high and the internal discharge transistor to go to cut-off mode once again. And the cycle repeats.

In the first pulse, the capacitor charges from zero to two-thirds of the supply voltage, however, in later pulses, it only charges from one-third to two-thirds of the supply voltage. Consequently, the first pulse have a longer high time interval compared to later pulses. Moreover, the capacitor charges through both resistors but only discharges through , thus the high interval is longer than the low interval. This is shown in the following equations.

The high time interval of each pulse is given by:

The low time interval of each pulse is given by:

Hence, the frequency of the pulse is given by:

[19]

and the duty cycle (%) is given by:

where is in seconds (time), is in ohms (resistance), is in farads (capacitance), is the natural log of 2 constant, which is 0.693147181 (rounded to 9 trailing digits) but commonly is rounded to fewer digits in 555 timer books and datasheets as 0.7 or 0.69 or 0.693.

Resistor requirements:

The first cycle will take appreciably longer than the calculated time, as the capacitor must charge from 0V to 23 of VCC from power-up, but only from 13 of VCC to 23 of VCC on subsequent cycles.

To have an output high time shorter than the low time (i.e., a duty cycle less than 50%) a fast diode (i.e. 1N4148 signal diode) can be placed in parallel with R2, with the cathode on the capacitor side. This bypasses R2 during the high part of the cycle so that the high interval depends only on R1 and C, with an adjustment based the voltage drop across the diode. The voltage drop across the diode slows charging on the capacitor so that the high time is a longer than the expected and often-cited ln(2)*R1C = 0.693 R1C. The low time will be the same as above, 0.693 R2C. With the bypass diode, the high time is

where Vdiode is when the diode's "on" current is 12 of Vcc/R1 which can be determined from its datasheet or by testing. As an extreme example, when Vcc= 5 and Vdiode= 0.7, high time = 1.00 R1C which is 45% longer than the "expected" 0.693 R1C. At the other extreme, when Vcc= 15 and Vdiode= 0.3, the high time = 0.725 R1C which is closer to the expected 0.693 R1C. The equation reduces to the expected 0.693 R1C if Vdiode= 0.

The operation of RESET in this mode is not well-defined. Some manufacturers' parts will hold the output state to what it was when RESET is taken low, others will send the output either high or low.

Monostable

Schematic of a 555 in monostable mode. Example values R = 220K, C = 100nF for debouncing a pushbutton. 555 Monostable.svg
Schematic of a 555 in monostable mode. Example values R = 220K, C = 100nF for debouncing a pushbutton.
Waveform in monostable mode NE555 Monotable Waveforms (English).png
Waveform in monostable mode
Monostable Mode Examples With Common Values
Time C R
100 uS (-0.026%)1nF91K
1 mS (-0.026%)10nF91K
10 mS (-0.026%)100nF91K
100 mS (-0.026%)1uF91K
1 S (-0.026%)10uF91K
10 S (-0.026%)100uF91K

In monostable mode, the output pulse ends when the voltage on the capacitor equals 23 of the supply voltage. The output pulse width can be lengthened or shortened to the need of the specific application by adjusting the values of R and C. [20]

Assume initially the output of the monostable is zero, the output of flip-flop(Q bar) is 1 so that the discharging transistor is on and voltage across capacitor is zero. One of the input of upper comparator is at 2/3 of supply voltage and other is connected to capacitor. For lower comparator, one of the input is trigger pulse and other is connected at 1/3 of supply voltage. Now the capacitor charges towards supply voltage(Vcc). When the trigger input is applied at trigger pin the output of lower comparator is 0 and upper comparator is 0. The output of flip-flop remains unchanged therefore the output is 0. when the voltage across capacitor crosses the 1/3 of the vcc the output of lower comparator changes from 0 to 1. Therefore, the output of monostable is one and the discharging transistor is still off and voltage across capacitor charges towards vcc from 1/3 of vcc,

When the voltage across capacitor crosses 2/3 of VCC, the output of upper comparator changes from 0 to 1, therefore the output of monostable is 0 and the discharging transistor is on and capacitor discharges through this transistor as it offers low resistance path. The cycle repeats continuously. The charging and discharging of capacitor depends on the time constant RC.

The voltage across capacitor is given by vc = Vcc(1-e^(-t/RC)) at t=T. Since vc =(2/3)Vcc, therefore 2/3Vcc = Vcc(1-e^(-T/RC)), thus reduced to T = RC ln(3) seconds.

The output pulse width of time t, which is the time it takes to charge C to 23 of the supply voltage, is given by

where is in seconds (time), is in ohms (resistance), is in farads (capacitance), is the natural log of 3 constant, which is 1.098612289 (rounded to 9 trailing digits) but commonly is rounded to fewer digits in 555 timer books and datasheets as 1.1 or 1.099.

While using the timer IC in monostable mode, the main disadvantage is that the time span between any two triggering pulses must be greater than the RC time constant. [21] Conversely, ignoring closely spaced pulses is done by setting the RC time constant to be larger than the span between spurious triggers. (Example: ignoring switch contact bouncing.)

Bistable

Schematic of a 555 in bistable flip-flop mode. High-value pull-up resistors should be added to the two inputs. 555 Bistabiel digitaal.svg
Schematic of a 555 in bistable flip-flop mode. High-value pull-up resistors should be added to the two inputs.
Inverted SR flip-flop symbol (without /Q) is similar to circuit on right Inverted SR Flip-flop.svg
Inverted SR flip-flop symbol (without /Q) is similar to circuit on right

In bistable mode, the 555 timer acts as a SR flip-flop. The trigger and reset inputs (pins 2 and 4 respectively on a 555) are held high via pull-up resistors while the threshold input (pin 6) is grounded. Thus configured, pulling the trigger momentarily to ground acts as a 'set' and transitions the output pin (pin 3) to VCC (high state). Pulling the reset input to ground acts as a 'reset' and transitions the output pin to ground (low state). No timing capacitors are required in a bistable configuration. Pin 7 (discharge) is left unconnected, or may be used as an open-collector output. [22]

Schmitt trigger

Schematic of a 555 in bistable schmitt trigger mode. Example values R1 and R2 = 100K, C = 10nF. 555 Bistabiel analoog.svg
Schematic of a 555 in bistable schmitt trigger mode. Example values R1 and R2 = 100K, C = 10nF.
Schmitt trigger inverter gate (lower symbol) is similar to circuit on right Schmitt trigger inverted symbol.svg
Schmitt trigger inverter gate (lower symbol) is similar to circuit on right

A 555 timer can be used to create a schmitt trigger inverter gate which converts a noisy input into a clean digital output. The input signal should be connected through a series capacitor which then connects to the trigger and threshold pins. A resistor divider, from VCC to GND, is connected to the previous tied pins. The reset pin is tied to VCC.

Specifications

Texas Instruments NE555 in DIP-8 and SO-8 packages NE555 DIP & SOIC.jpg
Texas Instruments NE555 in DIP-8 and SO-8 packages

These specifications apply to the bipolar NE555. Other 555 timers can have different specifications depending on the grade (military, medical, etc.). These values should be considered "ball park" values; the current official datasheet from the exact manufacturer of each chip should be consulted instead for parameter limitation recommendations.

Supply voltage (VCC)4.5 to 15 V
Supply current (VCC = +5 V)3 to 6 mA
Supply current (VCC = +15 V)10 to 15 mA
Output current (maximum)200 mA
Maximum Power dissipation600 mW
Power consumption (minimum operating)30 mW@5V, 225 mW@15V
Operating temperature 0 to 75 °C

Packages

In 1972, Signetics originally released the 555 timer in DIP-8 and TO5-8 metal can packages, and the 556 timer was released in DIP-14 package. [4]

Currently, the 555 is available in through-hole packages as DIP-8 and SIP-8 (both 2.54mm pitch), [23] and surface-mount packages as SO-8 (1.27mm pitch), SSOP-8 / TSSOP-8 / VSSOP-8 (0.65mm pitch), BGA (0.5mm pitch). [1] The Microchip Technology MIC1555 is a 555 CMOS timer with 3 fewer pins available in SOT23-5 (0.95mm pitch) surface mount package. [24]

The dual 556 timer is available in through hole packages as DIP-14 (2.54mm pitch), [18] and surface-mount packages as SO-14 (1.27mm pitch) and SSOP-14 (0.65mm pitch).

Derivatives

Numerous companies have manufactured one or more variants of the 555, 556, 558 timers over the past decades as many different part numbers. The following is a partial list:

ManufacturerPart
Number
Production
Status
IC
Process
Timer
Total
Supply
Min (Volt)
Supply
Max (Volt)
5V Supply
Iq (μA)
Frequency
Max (MHz)
RemarksDatasheet
Custom Silicon SolutionsCSS555YesCMOS11.25.54.31.0Low Voltage, Lowest Current
Internal EEPROM configuration

[25] [26]

Diodes Incorporated ZSCT155NoCMOS10.961500.33Lowest supply voltage

[27]

Intersil ICM7555YesCMOS1218401.0Lowest current of common parts

[14]

IntersilICM7556YesCMOS2218801.0Lowest current of common parts

[14]

Japan Radio Company NJM555YesBipolar14.51630000.1* SIP-8 package

[23]

Microchip Technology MIC1555YesCMOS1*2.7182405.0* SOT23-5 package

[24]

ON Semiconductor LM555YesBipolar14.51630000.1*

[28]

Signetics NE555NoBipolar14.51630000.1*First 555 timer
DIP-8 and TO5-8 package

[4] [13] [29] [2]

SigneticsNE556NoBipolar24.51660000.1*First 556 timer
DIP-14 package

[13] [2]

SigneticsNE558NoBipolar4*4.5184800*0.1*First 558 timer
DIP-16 package

[2]

Texas Instruments LM555YesBipolar14.51830000.1*

[21]

Texas InstrumentsLM556YesBipolar24.51660000.1*

[30]

Texas InstrumentsLMC555YesLinCMOS11.5151003.0 DSBGA-8 package (smallest 555)

[15]

Texas InstrumentsNE555YesBipolar14.51630000.1*Similar to Signetics NE555

[1]

Texas InstrumentsNE556YesBipolar24.51660000.1*Similar to Signetics NE556

[18]

Texas InstrumentsTLC551YesLinCMOS11151701.8Lowest voltage of active parts

[17]

Texas InstrumentsTLC552YesLinCMOS21153401.8Lowest voltage of active parts

[31]

Texas InstrumentsTLC555YesLinCMOS12151702.1

[16]

Texas InstrumentsTLC556YesLinCMOS22153402.1

[32]

X-REL SemiconductorXTR655Yes SOI 12.85.51704.0Extreme temperature (-60°C to +230°C),
ceramic DIP-8 package

[33]

Die of a NE556 dual timer manufactured by STMicroelectronics. STM-NE556-HD.jpg
Die of a NE556 dual timer manufactured by STMicroelectronics.
Die of a NE558D quad timer manufactured by Signetics. Signetics Corporation NE558D 0136O07 9331KK KOREA.jpg
Die of a NE558D quad timer manufactured by Signetics.
Table notes

556 dual timer

The dual version is called 556. It features two complete 555s in a 14 pin package. Only the two power supply pins are shared between the two timers. [13] Bipolar version are currently available, such as the NE556 and LM556. [18] [30] CMOS versions are currently available, such as the Intersil ICM7556 and Texas Instruments TLC556 and TLC552, see derivatives table. [14] [32] [31]

558 quad timer

Pinout of 558 quad timer (16 pins). The 558 timers are different than 555 timer (obsolete part) NE558 pennen.svg
Pinout of 558 quad timer (16 pins). The 558 timers are different than 555 timer (obsolete part)

The quad version is called 558. It has four reduced-functionality timers in a 16 pin package (four complete 555 timer circuits would have required 26 pins). [2] Since the 558 is uniquely different than the 555 and 556, the 558 was not as popular. Currently the 558 is not manufactured by any major chip companies (possibly not by any companies), thus the 558 should be treated as obsolete. Parts are still available from a limited number of sellers as "new old stock" (N.O.S.). [34]

Partial list of differences between 558 and 555 chips: [2]

Example applications

Stepped tone generator

This circuit requires two 555 or one 556 to generate a variety of sounds.

Joystick and game paddles

IBM PC Game Control Adapter
(8-bit ISA card) IBM PC Original Game Control Adapter.jpg
IBM PC Game Control Adapter
(8-bit ISA card)

The Apple II microcomputer used a quad timer 558 in monostable (or "one-shot") mode to interface up to four "game paddles" or two joysticks to the host computer. [36] It also used a single 555 for flashing the display cursor. [37]

The original IBM PC used a similar circuit for the game port on the "Game Control Adapter" 8-bit ISA card (IBM part number 1501300). [35] [38] In this joystick interface circuit, the capacitor of the RC network (see Monostable Mode above) was generally a 10 nF capacitor to ground with a series 2.2 KΩ resistor to the game port connector. [35] The external joystick was plugged into the adapter card. Internally it had two potentiometers (100 to 150 KΩ each), one for X and other for Y direction. The center wiper pin of the potentiometer was connected to an Axis wire in the cord and one end of the potentiometer was connected to the 5 Volt wire in the cord. The joystick potentiometer acted as a variable resistor in the RC network. [38] By moving the joystick, the resistance of the joystick increased from a small value up to about 100 kΩ. [38] [38]

Software running in the IBM PC computer started the process of determining the joystick position by writing to a special address (ISA bus I/O address 201h). [35] [38] [39] This would result in a trigger signal to the quad timer, which would cause the capacitor of the RC network to begin charging and cause the quad timer to output a pulse. The width of the pulse was determined by how long it took the capacitor to charge up to 23 of 5 V (or about 3.33 V), which was in turn determined by the joystick position. [38] [39] The software then measured the pulse width to determine the joystick position. A wide pulse represented the full-right joystick position, for example, while a narrow pulse represented the full-left joystick position. [38]

See also

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Pearson–Anson effect

The Pearson–Anson effect, discovered in 1922 by Stephen Oswald Pearson and Horatio Saint George Anson, is the phenomenon of an oscillating electric voltage produced by a neon bulb connected across a capacitor, when a direct current is applied through a resistor. This circuit, now called the Pearson-Anson oscillator, neon lamp oscillator, or sawtooth oscillator, is one of the simplest types of relaxation oscillator. It generates a sawtooth output waveform. It has been used in low frequency applications such as blinking warning lights, stroboscopes, tone generators in electronic organs and other electronic music circuits, and in time bases and deflection circuits of early cathode-ray tube oscilloscopes. Since the development of microelectronics, these simple negative resistance oscillators have been superseded in many applications by more flexible semiconductor relaxation oscillators such as the 555 timer IC.

A flash ADC is a type of analog-to-digital converter that uses a linear voltage ladder with a comparator at each "rung" of the ladder to compare the input voltage to successive reference voltages. Often these reference ladders are constructed of many resistors; however, modern implementations show that capacitive voltage division is also possible. The output of these comparators is generally fed into a digital encoder, which converts the inputs into a binary value.

A switched capacitor (SC) is an electronic circuit element implementing a filter. It works by moving charges into and out of capacitors when switches are opened and closed. Usually, non-overlapping signals are used to control the switches, so that not all switches are closed simultaneously. Filters implemented with these elements are termed "switched-capacitor filters", and depend only on the ratios between capacitances. This makes them much more suitable for use within integrated circuits, where accurately specified resistors and capacitors are not economical to construct.

In electronics, a differentiator is a circuit that is designed such that the output of the circuit is approximately directly proportional to the rate of change of the input. A true differentiator cannot be physically realized, because it has infinite gain at infinite frequency. A similar effect can be achieved, however, by limiting the gain above some frequency. The differentiator circuit is essentially a high-pass filter.
An active differentiator includes some form of amplifier, while a passive differentiator is made only of resistors, capacitors and inductors.

Bipolar transistor biasing process necessary for BJT amplifiers to work correctly

Bipolar transistors must be properly biased to operate correctly. In circuits made with individual devices, biasing networks consisting of resistors are commonly employed. Much more elaborate biasing arrangements are used in integrated circuits, for example, bandgap voltage references and current mirrors. The voltage divider configuration achieves the correct voltages by the use of resistors in certain patterns. By selecting the proper resistor values, stable current levels can be achieved that vary only little over temperature and with transistor properties such as β.

An integrating ADC is a type of analog-to-digital converter that converts an unknown input voltage into a digital representation through the use of an integrator. In its basic implementation, the dual-slope converter, the unknown input voltage is applied to the input of the integrator and allowed to ramp for a fixed time period. Then a known reference voltage of opposite polarity is applied to the integrator and is allowed to ramp until the integrator output returns to zero. The input voltage is computed as a function of the reference voltage, the constant run-up time period, and the measured run-down time period. The run-down time measurement is usually made in units of the converter's clock, so longer integration times allow for higher resolutions. Likewise, the speed of the converter can be improved by sacrificing resolution.

LM3914 Bar/dot LED driver

The LM3914 is an integrated circuit (IC) designed by National Semiconductor and used to operate displays that visually show the magnitude of an analog signal.

References

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Further reading

Books
Books with timer chapters
Datasheets