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. 169-8605
Mfr. Part No.BC33725TFR
$0.078
Each (On a Reel of 2000)
units
NPN 800 mA 50 V TO-92 Through Hole 625 mW Single 10 V 5 V 50 MHz 3 1 4.58 x 3.86 x 4.58mm -
RS Stock No. 124-9938
Mfr. Part No.2N3771G
$6.67
Each (In a Tray of 100)
units
NPN 30 A 40 V TO-204AA Through Hole 150 W Single 50 V 5 V 50 kHz 2 1 39.37 x 26.67 x 8.51mm -
RS Stock No. 168-6174
Mfr. Part No.BD237
$1.137
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
NPN 2 A 80 V SOT-32 Through Hole 25 W Single 80 V 5 V 3 MHz 3 1 10.8 x 7.8 x 2.7mm -
RS Stock No. 803-1068
Mfr. Part No.BC33725TAR
$0.134
Each (In a Pack of 200)
units
NPN 800 mA 50 V TO-92 Through Hole 625 mW Single 10 V 5 V 50 MHz 3 1 4.58 x 3.86 x 4.58mm -
RS Stock No. 124-9936
Mfr. Part No.2N3055AG
$5.922
Each (In a Tray of 100)
units
NPN 15 A 60 V TO-204 Through Hole 115 W Single 100 V 7 V 1 MHz 2 1 39.37 x 26.67 x 8.51mm -
RS Stock No. 806-2734
Mfr. Part No.KSA1381ESTU
$0.527
Each (In a Tube of 60)
units
PNP 100 mA 300 V TO-126 Through Hole 7 W Single -300 V -5 V 150 MHz 3 1 8 x 3.25 x 11mm -
RS Stock No. 774-3224
Mfr. Part No.2N3771G
$11.37
Each
units
NPN 30 A 40 V TO-204AA Through Hole 150 W Single 50 V 5 V 50 kHz 2 1 39.37 x 26.67 x 8.51mm -65 °C
RS Stock No. 774-3212
Mfr. Part No.2N3055AG
$10.25
Each
units
NPN 15 A 60 V TO-204AA Through Hole 115 W Single 100 V 7 V 1 MHz 2 1 39.37 x 26.67 x 8.51mm -65 °C
RS Stock No. 485-9979
Mfr. Part No.BD237
$1.446
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
NPN 2 A 80 V SOT-32 Through Hole 25 W Single 80 V 5 V 3 MHz 3 1 10.8 x 7.8 x 2.7mm -65 °C
RS Stock No. 184-874
Mfr. Part No.2SC5242-O(Q)
BrandToshiba
$4.70
Each
units
NPN 15 A 230 V TO-3PN Through Hole 130 W Single 230 V 5 V 30 MHz 3 1 19 x 15.9 x 4.8mm -55 °C
RS Stock No. 124-1731
Mfr. Part No.BC33725TA
$0.102
Each (On a Reel of 2000)
units
NPN 800 mA 45 V TO-92 Through Hole 625 mW Single - 5 V 100 MHz 3 1 5.33 x 5.2 x 4.19mm -
RS Stock No. 146-0892
Mfr. Part No.BC860CW
BrandNexperia
$0.03
Each (On a Reel of 3000)
units
PNP 100 mA 45 V SOT-323 (SC-70) Surface Mount 200 mW Single -50 V -5 V 100 MHz 3 1 2.2 x 1.35 x 1mm -
RS Stock No. 816-7744
Mfr. Part No.BC860CW
BrandNexperia
$0.063
Each (In a Pack of 200)
units
PNP 100 mA 45 V SOT-323 (SC-70) Surface Mount 200 mW Single -50 V -5 V 100 MHz 3 1 2.2 x 1.35 x 1mm -
RS Stock No. 671-1116
Mfr. Part No.BC33725TA
$0.356
Each (In a Pack of 10)
units
NPN 800 mA 45 V TO-92 Through Hole 625 mW Single - 5 V 100 MHz 3 1 5.33 x 5.2 x 4.19mm -55 °C
RS Stock No. 168-7865
Mfr. Part No.MD2310FX
$2.982
Each (In a Tube of 30)
units
NPN 14 A 700 V TO-3PF Through Hole 62 W Single - 9 V 64 kHz 3 1 15.7 x 5.7 x 26.7mm -
RS Stock No. 761-3505
Mfr. Part No.BC557BTA
$0.128
Each (In a Pack of 100)
units
PNP 100 mA 45 V TO-92 Through Hole 500 mW Single -50 V -5 V 150 MHz 3 1 4.58 x 3.86 x 4.58mm -
RS Stock No. 810-3548
Mfr. Part No.MD2310FX
$3.15
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
NPN 14 A 700 V TO-3PF Through Hole 62 W Single - 9 V 64 kHz 3 1 15.7 x 5.7 x 26.7mm -
RS Stock No. 145-4604
Mfr. Part No.FJA4213OTU
$4.16
Each (In a Tube of 30)
units
PNP 17 A 250 V TO-3P Through Hole 130 W Single -250 V -5 V 30 MHz 3 1 15.6 x 4.8 x 19.9mm -
RS Stock No. 169-8620
Mfr. Part No.BC557BTF
$0.061
Each (On a Reel of 2000)
units
PNP 100 mA 45 V TO-92 Through Hole 500 mW Single -50 V -5 V 10 MHz 3 1 5.2 x 4.19 x 5.33mm -
RS Stock No. 184-880
Mfr. Part No.2SA1962-O(Q)
BrandToshiba
$5.62
Each
units
PNP 15 A 230 V TO-3PN Through Hole 130 W Single 230 V 5 V 30 MHz 3 1 19 x 15.9 x 4.8mm -55 °C