Electrical components are used to make electrical devices function. They are combined together and soldered onto a circuit board to create the basis for electronic devices. The combination of components and the layout on the circuit board varies by device, but can serve as the foundation for MP3 players, computers, televisions, and much more.
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Electrical components fall into one of two categories: passive and active. While passive components do not run on power, active components require a level of voltage to be applied in order to be used. Active components provide directionality and include parts such as caps, integrated circuits and amps. Passive components allow current to flow in either direction and include connectors, resistors and inductors.
There are a variety of active electrical components, including diodes, a two-terminal device used to current flow through a product. Transistors are a fundamental semiconductor device in computers and are used to amplify signals. Integrated circuits, also called microchips, are manufactured directly into a material and these micro electronic circuits are used in digital appliances. Capacitors store energy between conductors and can also be used as electronic filters for differentiating frequencies.
Passive components include resonators, devices that automatically alternate between frequencies, giving off energy in the form of electromagnetic or mechanical waves. Connectors are used to temporarily or permanently connect two parts together. Resistors are terminal parts used to manage the current's flow.
Logic devices are a subcategory of active component and include gates, a part of a circuit composed of a collection of transistors and resistors. Signal converters, which change the form or frequency of a signal, and latch circuits, which transfers input to output are also variations of logic devices.