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Surface-mount electronic components

Electronics comprises the physics, engineering, technology and applications that deal with the emission, flow and control of electrons in vacuum and matter.

It uses active devices to control electron flow by amplification and rectification, which distinguishes it from classical electrical engineering which uses passive effects such as resistance, capacitance and inductance to control current flow. Electronics has had a major effect on the development of modern society. The identification of the electron in 1897, along with the subsequent invention of the vacuum tube which could amplify and rectify small electrical signals, inaugurated the field of electronics and the electron age. This distinction started around 1906 with the invention by Lee De Forest of the triode, which made electrical amplification of weak radio signals and audio signals possible with a non-mechanical device. Until 1950, this field was called "radio technology" because its principal application was the design and theory of radio transmitters, receivers, and vacuum tubes.

The term "solid-state electronics" emerged after the first working transistor was invented by William Shockley, Walter Houser Brattain and John Bardeen at Bell Labs in 1947. The MOSFET (MOS transistor) was later invented by Mohamed Atalla and Dawon Kahng at Bell Labs in 1959. The MOSFET was the first truly compact transistor that could be miniaturised and mass-produced for a wide range of uses, revolutionizing the electronics industry, and playing a central role in the microelectronics revolution and Digital Revolution. The MOSFET has since become the basic element in most modern electronic equipment, and is the most widely used electronic device in the world.

Electronics is widely used in information processing, telecommunication, and signal processing. The ability of electronic devices to act as switches makes digital information-processing possible. Interconnection technologies such as circuit boards, electronics packaging technology, and other varied forms of communication infrastructure complete circuit functionality and transform the mixed electronic components into a regular working system, called an electronic system; examples are computers or control systems. An electronic system may be a component of another engineered system or a standalone device. most electronic devices use semiconductor components to perform electron control. Commonly, electronic devices contain circuitry consisting of active semiconductors supplemented with passive elements; such a circuit is described as an electronic circuit. Electronics deals with electrical circuits that involve active electrical components such as vacuum tubes, transistors, diodes, integrated circuits, optoelectronics, and sensors, associated passive electrical components, and interconnection technologies. The nonlinear behaviour of active components and their ability to control electron flows makes amplification of weak signals possible.

The study of semiconductor devices and related technology is considered a branch of solid-state physics, whereas the design and construction of electronic circuits to solve practical problems come under electronics engineering. This article focuses on engineering aspects of electronics.

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Georg Simon Ohm, (March 16, 1789 - July 6, 1854) a German physicist, was born in Erlangen and educated at the university there. His most important finding was Ohm's Law, which he first published in his pamphlet Die galvanische Kette mathematisch bearbeitet, in 1827. This work, the germ of which had appeared during the two preceding years in the journals of Schweigger and Poggendorff, has exerted an important influence on the development of the theory and applications of electric current. Ohm's name was adopted as the SI unit of resistance, the ohm (symbol Ω).

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Crowbar Circuit.svg
Credit: commons:User:Jjbeard
Circuit diagram of a simple Crowbar circuit, with an 8V nominal output (7.6V with SD1).

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CERN LHC Tunnel1.jpg

August 14, 2014

512K Day arrives, surpassing some routers capacity, breaking the internet. More...

November 19, 2008

The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) said that repairing the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will cost up to 16.6 million or US$21 million. More...

April 30, 2008

HP Labs announces the creation of a Memristor, the fourth basic element of electronic circuits with the Resistor, Capacitor, and Inductor.

December 4, 2007

2007TaipeiITMonth HP Pavilion Slimline s3160tw.jpg

On the third day of the 2007 Taipei IT Month in Taiwan yesterday, notebook computers and desktop computers built with AMD's Phenom processor and Intel Penryn processor openly battled for the consumer-market after each company launched their quad core processors. More...

February 27, 2007

The new South Pole Telescope has recently collected its first light in a long-term project to learn about the nature of dark energy. More...

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An organic light-emitting diode (OLED) is a special type of light-emitting diode in which the emissive layer comprises a thin-film of certain organic compounds. The emissive electroluminescent layer can include a polymeric substance that allows the deposition of suitable organic compounds, for example, in rows and columns on a flat carrier by using a simple "printing" method to create a matrix of pixels which can emit different colored light. Such systems can be used in television screens, computer displays, portable system screens, advertising and information, and indication applications etc. OLEDs can also be used in light sources for general space illumination.

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Honeywell-Bull DPS 7 Mainframe BWW March 1990.jpg

Mainframes are computers used mainly by large organizations for critical applications, typically bulk data processing such as census, industry/consumer statistics, ERP, and financial transaction processing.

The term originated during the early years of computing and referred to the large mechanical assembly that held the central processor and input/output complex. Later the term was used to distinguish high-end commercial machines from less powerful units which were often contained in smaller packages. Today, this term refers primarily to IBM System z9 mainframes, the lineal descendants of the System/360, but it is also used for the lineal descendents of the Burroughs large systems and the UNIVAC 1100/2200 series mainframes.


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