Bipolar Transistors

Bipolar Transistors are a solid state, three-pin devices made from three layers of silicon. A bipolar transistor is designed to amplify current, bipolar transistors can also function as a switch. There are two main types of transistor, PNP (positive negative positive) or NPN (negative positive-negative).

How a Bipolar transistor is made

Bipolar transistors are constructed by joining two signal diodes back to back creating two PN junctions connected in series, sharing a common P or N terminal. By nature, silicon does not normally conduct electricity well. However, when silicon is treated with certain chemicals or impurities we can make the material and electrons behave in a different way. This process is called doping. The doping process improves the semiconductors ability to conduct electricity.

How do bipolar transistors work?

Bipolar transistors have two possible functions, switching, and amplification. Due to the devices three layers of doped semiconductor material, supplying the transistor with a signal voltage enables the discrete component to act as an insulator or a conductor. This clever change provides the transistors with two basic functions, switching (digital) electronics or amplification (analog) electronics.

Transistors are available in panel, surface and through-hole mounting options in plastic package or metal can versions. All have three terminals or pins, the Base, the Collector, and the Emitter.

They are also available as;

  • Digital transistors - are made of a semiconductor material, usually silicon, which conducts the current (or electricity) with little resistance. They also tend to have at least three terminals for easy connection to an external circuit.
  • UJT transistors - constructed of a bar of lightly dope N type silicone with a small piece of heavily doped P type material attached to one side. Since the silicon bar is lightly dope it has very high resistance.

Applications of bipolar transistors?

Transistors are one of the most widely used discrete components in electronic designs and circuits. Transistors are used for the amplification of all types of electrical signals in circuits made up of individual components rather than ICs (integrated circuits).


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Description Price Transistor Type Maximum DC Collector Current Maximum Collector Emitter Voltage Package Type Mounting Type Maximum Power Dissipation Transistor Configuration Maximum Collector Base Voltage Maximum Emitter Base Voltage Maximum Operating Frequency Pin Count Number of Elements per Chip Dimensions Minimum Operating Temperature
RS Stock No. 544-9680
Mfr. Part No.MJE15030G
$2.66
Each
units
NPN 8 A 150 V TO-220AB Through Hole 50 W Single 150 V 5 V 30 MHz 3 1 9.28 x 10.28 x 4.82mm -65 °C
RS Stock No. 125-0072
Mfr. Part No.MJE15030G
$1.817
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
NPN 8 A 150 V TO-220AB Through Hole 50 W Single 150 V 5 V 30 MHz 3 1 9.28 x 10.28 x 4.82mm -
RS Stock No. 124-1730
Mfr. Part No.BC547BTA
$0.049
Each (On a Reel of 2000)
units
NPN 100 mA 45 V TO-92 Through Hole 500 mW Single 50 V 6 V 300 MHz 3 1 5.33 x 5.2 x 4.19mm -
RS Stock No. 756-0622
Mfr. Part No.HN4B101J(TE85L,F)
BrandToshiba
$0.364
Each (In a Pack of 10)
units
NPN + PNP 1.2 A 30 V SMV Surface Mount 850 mW Common Emitter -30 V, 50 V -7 (PNP) V, 7 (NPN) V - 5 2 2.9 x 1.6 x 1.1mm -
RS Stock No. 168-6170
Mfr. Part No.TIP32C
$0.667
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
PNP 3 A 100 V TO-220 Through Hole 2 W Single 100 V 5 V - 3 1 9.15 x 10.4 x 4.6mm -
RS Stock No. 671-1113
Mfr. Part No.BC547BTA
$0.255
Each (In a Pack of 25)
units
NPN 100 mA 45 V TO-92 Through Hole 500 mW Single 50 V 6 V 300 MHz 3 1 5.33 x 5.2 x 4.19mm -65 °C
RS Stock No. 169-8610
Mfr. Part No.BC547BTF
$0.058
Each (On a Reel of 2000)
units
NPN 100 mA 45 V TO-92 Through Hole 500 mW Single 50 V 6 V 1 MHz 3 1 4.58 x 3.86 x 4.58mm -
RS Stock No. 803-1087
Mfr. Part No.BC547BTF
$0.106
Each (In a Pack of 200)
units
NPN 100 mA 45 V TO-92 Through Hole 500 mW Single 50 V 6 V 1 MHz 3 1 4.58 x 3.86 x 4.58mm -
RS Stock No. 485-9777
Mfr. Part No.TIP32C
$0.992
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
PNP 3 A 100 V TO-220 Through Hole 2 W Single 100 V 5 V - 3 1 9.15 x 10.4 x 4.6mm -65 °C
RS Stock No. 124-1357
Mfr. Part No.MPSA42
$0.143
Each (In a Bag of 1000)
units
NPN 500 mA 300 V TO-92 Through Hole 625 mW Single 300 V 6 V 50 MHz 3 1 5.2 x 4.19 x 5.33mm -
RS Stock No. 145-5383
Mfr. Part No.PN2222ATA
$0.071
Each (On a Tape of 2000)
units
NPN 1 A 40 V TO-92 Through Hole 625 mW Single 75 V 6 V 300 MHz 3 1 5.2 x 4.19 x 5.33mm -
RS Stock No. 890-2682
Mfr. Part No.2SC5200-O(S1,F,S)
BrandToshiba
$4.974
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
NPN 15 A 230 V TO-3PL Through Hole 150 W Single 230 V 5 V - 3 1 20.5 x 26 x 5.2mm -
RS Stock No. 739-0381
Mfr. Part No.PN2222ATA
$0.327
Each (In a Pack of 10)
units
NPN 1 A 40 V TO-92 Through Hole 625 mW Single 75 V 6 V 300 MHz 3 1 5.2 x 4.19 x 5.33mm -55 °C
RS Stock No. 251-3564
Mfr. Part No.TIP35C
$3.48
Each
units
NPN 25 A 100 V TO-247 Through Hole 125 W Single 100 V 5 V 3 MHz 3 1 20.15 x 15.75 x 5.15mm -65 °C
RS Stock No. 168-6056
Mfr. Part No.TIP35C
$2.41
Each (In a Tube of 30)
units
NPN 25 A 100 V TO-247 Through Hole 125 W Single 100 V 5 V 3 MHz 3 1 20.15 x 15.75 x 5.15mm -
RS Stock No. 166-2768
Mfr. Part No.FJP13009H2TU
$1.25
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
NPN 12 A 400 V TO-220 Through Hole 100 W Single 700 V 9 V - 3 1 9.9 x 4.5 x 9.2mm -
RS Stock No. 296-267
Mfr. Part No.MJ15003G
$12.35
Each
units
NPN 20 A 140 V TO-204AA Through Hole 250 W Single 140 V 5 V 2 MHz 2 1 39.37 x 26.67 x 8.51mm -65 °C
RS Stock No. 739-0420
Mfr. Part No.FJP13009H2TU
$2.142
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
NPN 12 A 400 V TO-220 Through Hole 100 W Single 700 V 9 V - 3 1 9.9 x 4.5 x 9.2mm -
RS Stock No. 761-3701
Mfr. Part No.MPSA42
$0.487
Each (In a Pack of 50)
units
NPN 500 mA 300 V TO-92 Through Hole 625 mW Single 300 V 6 V 50 MHz 3 1 5.2 x 4.19 x 5.33mm -55 °C
RS Stock No. 862-4893
Mfr. Part No.2N5686G
$27.27
Each
units
NPN 50 A 80 V TO-204 Through Hole 300 mW Single 80 V 5 V - 2 1 38.86 x 26.67 x 8.51mm -