Most transistors are made from very pure silicon, and some from germanium, but certain other semiconductor materials are sometimes used. A transistor may have only one kind of charge carrier, in a field-effect transistor, or may have two kinds of charge carriers in bipolar junction transistor devices. Compared with the vacuum tube, transistors are generally smaller and require less power to operate. Certain vacuum tubes have advantages over transistors at very high operating frequencies or high operating voltages. Many types of transistors are made to standardized specifications by multiple manufacturers.
The thermionic triode, a vacuum tube invented in 1907, enabled amplified radio technology and long-distance telephony. The triode, however, was a fragile device that consumed a substantial amount of power. In 1909, physicist William Eccles discovered the crystal diode oscillator. Physicist Julius Edgar Lilienfeld filed a patent for a field-effect transistor (FET) in Canada in 1925, which was intended to be a solid-state replacement for the triode. Lilienfeld also filed identical patents in the United States in 1926 and 1928. However, Lilienfeld did not publish any research articles about his devices nor did his patents cite any specific examples of a working prototype. Because the production of high-quality semiconductor materials was still decades away, Lilienfeld's solid-state amplifier ideas would not have found practical use in the 1920s and 1930s, even if such a device had been built. In 1934, inventor Oskar Heil patented a similar device in Europe.
The first high-frequency transistor was the surface-barrier germanium transistor developed by Philco in 1953, capable of operating at frequencies up to 60 MHz. These were made by etching depressions into an n-type germanium base from both sides with jets of Indium(III) sulfate until it was a few ten-thousandths of an inch thick. Indium electroplated into the depressions formed the collector and emitter.
The first "prototype" pocket transistor radio was shown by INTERMETALL (a company founded by Herbert Mataré in 1952) at the Internationale Funkausstellung Düsseldorf between August 29, 1953 and September 6, 1953. The first "production" pocket transistor radio was the Regency TR-1, released in October 1954. Produced as a joint venture between the Regency Division of Industrial Development Engineering Associates, I.D.E.A. and Texas Instruments of Dallas Texas, the TR-1 was manufactured in Indianapolis, Indiana. It was a near pocket-sized radio featuring 4 transistors and one germanium diode. The industrial design was outsourced to the Chicago firm of Painter, Teague and Petertil. It was initially released in one of six different colours: black, ivory, mandarin red, cloud grey, mahogany and olive green. Other colours were to shortly follow.
CMOS (complementary MOS) was invented by Chih-Tang Sah and Frank Wanlass at Fairchild Semiconductor in 1963. The first report of a floating-gate MOSFET was made by Dawon Kahng and Simon Sze in 1967. A double-gate MOSFET was first demonstrated in 1984 by Electrotechnical Laboratory researchers Toshihiro Sekigawa and Yutaka Hayashi. FinFET (fin field-effect transistor), a type of 3D non-planar multi-gate MOSFET, originated from the research of Digh Hisamoto and his team at Hitachi Central Research Laboratory in 1989.
The transistor's low cost, flexibility, and reliability have made it a ubiquitous device. Transistorized mechatronic circuits have replaced electromechanical devices in controlling appliances and machinery. It is often easier and cheaper to use a standard microcontroller and write a computer program to carry out a control function than to design an equivalent mechanical system to control that same function.
There are two types of transistors, which have slight differences in how they are used in a circuit. A bipolar transistor has terminals labeled base, collector, and emitter. A small current at the base terminal (that is, flowing between the base and the emitter) can control or switch a much larger current between the collector and emitter terminals. For a field-effect transistor, the terminals are labeled gate, source, and drain, and a voltage at the gate can control a current between source and drain.
In a grounded-emitter transistor circuit, such as the light-switch circuit shown, as the base voltage rises, the emitter and collector currents rise exponentially. The collector voltage drops because of reduced resistance from the collector to the emitter. If the voltage difference between the collector and emitter were zero (or near zero), the collector current would be limited only by the load resistance (light bulb) and the supply voltage. This is called saturation because the current is flowing from collector to emitter freely. When saturated, the switch is said to be on.
The use of bipolar transistors for switching applications requires biasing the transistor so that it operates between its cut-off region in the off-state and the saturation region (on). This requires sufficient base drive current. As the transistor provides current gain, it facilitates the switching of a relatively large current in the collector by a much smaller current into the base terminal. The ratio of these currents varies depending on the type of transistor, and even for a particular type, varies depending on the collector current. In the example of a light-switch circuit, as shown, the resistor is chosen to provide enough base current to ensure the transistor is saturated. The base resistor value is calculated from the supply voltage, transistor C-E junction voltage drop, collector current, and amplification factor beta.
Convenient mnemonic to remember the type of transistor (represented by an electrical symbol) involves the direction of the arrow. For the BJT, on an n-p-n transistor symbol, the arrow will "Not Point iN". On a p-n-p transistor symbol, the arrow "Points iN Proudly". This however does not apply to MOSFET-based transistor symbols as the arrow is typically reversed (i.e. the arrow for the n-p-n points inside).
The European Electronic Component Manufacturers Association (EECA) uses a numbering scheme that was inherited from Pro Electron when it merged with EECA in 1983. This scheme begins with two letters: the first gives the semiconductor type (A for germanium, B for silicon, and C for materials like GaAs); the second letter denotes the intended use (A for diode, C for general-purpose transistor, etc.). A three-digit sequence number (or one letter and two digits, for industrial types) follows. With early devices this indicated the case type. Suffixes may be used, with a letter (e.g. "C" often means high hFE, such as in: BC549C) or other codes may follow to show gain (e.g. BC327-25) or voltage rating (e.g. BUK854-800A). The more common prefixes are:
Often a given transistor type is available in several packages. Transistor packages are mainly standardized, but the assignment of a transistor's functions to the terminals is not: other transistor types can assign other functions to the package's terminals. Even for the same transistor type the terminal assignment can vary (normally indicated by a suffix letter to the part number, q.e. BC212L and BC212K).
We deposited CuGaSnS4 thin films on soda-lima glass substrates via a spray pyrolysis process. The X-ray diffraction of CuGaSnS4 films established the formation of an orthorhombic single phase. In addition, the structural parameters of the CuGaSnS4 films were estimated by Debye-Scherer's formulas, which showed that an enhancement in crystallite size () values occurred by increasing the thickness of the investigated films. The EDAX pattern of CuGaSnS4 films confirms a stoichiometric composition. The optical results revealed that the CuGaSnS4 films possessed a direct optical energy gap (Eg). The Eg values were reduced from 1.50 to 1.38 eV with the increase in thickness. Also, there was an observed increase in the linear refractive index and the linear absorption coefficient values occurred due to the increased thickness. Finally, the optoelectrical constants of the sprayed CuGaSnS4 films such as the optical conductivity (σopt) and the optical free carrier concentration to effective mass were enlarged with increasing film thickness. The nonlinear optical study showed that the increase in film thickness enhanced the nonlinear optical constants of CuGaSnS4 films. The hot-probe procedure shows that the sprayed CuGaSnS4 films expose p-type conductivity. 2b1af7f3a8