Constant-current diode

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Electric symbol Current limiting diode symbol.svg
Electric symbol

Constant-current diode is an electronic device that limits current to a maximal specified value for the device. It is known as current-limiting diode (CLD), current-regulating diode (CRD).

Internal structure Current limiting diode - internal structure.svg
Internal structure

These diodes consist of an n-channel JFET with the gate shorted to the source, which functions like a two-terminal current limiter or current source (analogous to a voltage-limiting Zener diode). They allow a current through them to rise to a certain value, and then level off at a specific value. Unlike Zener diodes, these diodes keep the current constant instead of the voltage constant. These devices keep the current flowing through them unchanged when the voltage changes. An example is the 1N5312. Note the negative VGS is required, as an example on the n-type junction-gate field-effect transistor 2N5457.

JFET type of field-effect transistor

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Diode
JFET

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