A rectifier diode is a semiconductor device that converts AC (alternating current) to DC (direct current). It’s commonly used in digital electronics, and it can handle currents ranging from mA to kA and voltages up to kV.
Rectifier diodes are usually made from silicon and can handle high currents. However, some less common types are made from materials like germanium (Ge) or gallium arsenide.
Ge diodes have limitations, such as lower reverse voltage tolerance and a lower allowable junction temperature, but they have the advantage of a lower threshold voltage when operating in a forward bias.
Rectifier diodes have two sets of technical parameters: permissible limits and characteristic parameters. Their symbol is shown below, with the arrowhead indicating the direction of conventional current flow.
- Low forward voltage drop
- High current capability
- High reliability
- High surge current capability
- 1 x Rectifier Diode