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  Glossary Of Electronic & Electrical Terms

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Useful Industry Links Glossary Of Electronic and Elctrical Terms  

ES Components has collected hundreds of definitions to help you with the meaning of acronyms, words and
regulations that you may run into in the electronic and electrical industry

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  Term Definition  
  CABLE A type of linear transmission medium. Some of the common types of cables include: hook up wire, coaxial (shielded) cables, lamp amd mains cable, figure-8 (zip) cable and fibre optics  
  CAPACITOR A pair of parallel "plates" separated by an insulator (the dielectric). Stores an electric charge, and tends to pass higher frequencies more readily than low frequencies. Does not pass direct current, and acts as an insulator. Electrically it is the opposite to an inductor. Basic unit of measurement is the Farad, but is typically measured in micro-farads (uF = 1 x 10-6F) or nano-farads (nF - 1 x 10-9F)  
  CATHODE One of the two terminals of a diode (negative type material) or the terminal (also negative type material) that is common to both input and output sections of an SCR  
  CELL A single unit of a battery that generates a DC voltage by converting chemical or solar energy into electrical energy.  
  CLEAN ROOM A room in which the air is highly filtered in order to keep out impurities. Chip fabrication plants use clean rooms where the air is completely exchanged as much as seven times per minute. Workers go through an elaborate procedure to gown themselves in the "bunny suits" which are required to keep them from contaminating the atmosphere. Clean rooms are also used in the manufacture of hard disks. In the biotech industry, clean rooms keep the environment free of infectious bacteria and viruses.  
  CHIPS Unpackaged diodes, bipolar transistors, SCRs, TRIACs, and field-effect transistors (FETs) - also called DICE  
  CIRCUIT A single component or group of interconnected components powered by a source of voltage and configured according to specified rules. A circuit performs a specific or a predetermined general task.  
  CIRCUIT BREAKER An automatic, magnetic, or bimetallic device that will open a current-carrying circuit causing the circuit to become inoperative. This device is used to prevent circuit damage under a condition of excess current. Unlike a fuse that melts when its rating is exceeded, a circuit breaker can be reset automatically or manually when the circuit problem is corrected.  
  CMOS (COMPLEMENTARY MOSFET A combination of an N-channel and a P-channel MOSFET in a single switching circuit. This circuit features very low power dissipation and the effective elimination of an external load resistor. The device responds to a digital pulse at its input by turning one section of the device ON and the other OFF, causing the turned OFF section to act as its high-resistance load. When the input pulse reverts to zero, the state of the two sections of the device are reversed.  
  COATED WIREWOUND Resistance alloy in wire form wound on a former and insulated by a conformal coating of an epoxy resin, silicone enamel or vitreous enamel.  
  COAXIAL CABLE a metallic cable constructed in such a way that the inner conductor is shielded from EMR (electromagnetic radiation) interference by the outer conductor. Coaxial cable is less susceptible to more transmission impairments than twisted pair cable, and it has a much greater bandwidth; thus coaxial cable is used by most analogue and digital systems for the transmission of low level signals  
  COIL A length of insulated wire wound around a laminated iron or steel core, a ferrite or powdered iron core, or a non-ferrous material such as ceramic aluminum, or plastic. A non-ferrous core is called an "air core"since it is non-magnetic in nature.  
  COLLECTOR The output terminal of a bipolar transistor  
  COMPLEMENTARY BIPOLAR TRANSISTORS An arrangement of NPN and PNP bipolar transistors in which the polarity of the supply voltage applied to one device is the reverse of the other. The two transistors normally have identical electrical characteristics and are used as a matched pair.  
  COMPONENT An individual part or element of an electrical or electronic circuit which performs a designated function within that circuit. It may consist of a single part, a combination of parts, or assemblies.  
  CONDUCTOR A metal material that allows electrical current to flow and has essentially zero resistance.  
  CONDUCTIVE ADHESIVE An adhesive material (usually epoxy) that has metal powder (usually silver) added to increase electrical conductivity  
  CURRENT The movement of electrons per second through a conductor or a component. It is measured in amperes and is designated by the letter, I. There are 6.25 x 1018 electrons per second in one ampere. (1018 = a billion billion)  

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