An Electric Component can be described, as an electronic element with at least two or more metallic pads or connecting leads. Usually, an electronic component is connected to another component i.e.; a printed circuit board to produce an electronic circuit, by the process of soldering. These components can be packaged and purchased on their own i.e.; capacitor, transistor or resistor, or an electronic component can be purchased in groups, such as integrated circuits. These are widely available from any electronic component distributor.
Usually PCB Connector Contacts are mechanically stabilized, and by being enclosed within synthetic resin are protected from environmental influences. Electronic components are either passive or active. Passive components do not have gain or directionality, and active components do have gain and directionality.
There are many different types of electronic components which are used in the electronics industry and these can include:
o Capacitors : Connectors and cables : Lamps : Integrated circuits : Relays
o LEDs : Resistors : Switches : Transistors : Variable resistors
o And many other components including LDRs and thermistors.
CAPACITORS store electric charge, and are used with resistors in timing circuits. They are used to smooth varying DC supplies by acting as a reservoir of charge.
DIODES function by allowing electricity to flow in only one direction and they are the electrical version of the earlier valve.
RELAYS are electrically operated switches. Current flowing through the coil of a relay creates a magnetic field which attracts a lever and changes the switch contacts.
There is a vast number of different cables and connectors and some of these are:
o Battery clips and holders : Terminal blocks and PCB terminals : Crocodile clips
o Single core wire : Stranded wire : Signal cable : Screened cable : Mains flex
o A wire is a single conductor which may have an outer layer of insulation.
o A flex is the proper name for a flexible cable fitted to a mains electrical appliance.
o A lead is a complete assembly of cables and connectors.
o A cable is an assembly of one or more conductors with some flexibility.
TRANSISTORS amplify current. In many circuits a resistor is also used to convert the changing current to a changing voltage, so the PCB Connector Contacts is being used to amplify voltage.
LEDs emit light when an electric current passes through them, and they must be connected the correct way round.