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From: Fred Bloggs
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Subject: Re: 1.6V zener diodes?
References: <email@example.com> <firstname.lastname@example.org> <10Pq9.508$Vv3.email@example.com> <firstname.lastname@example.org> <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Oct 2002 13:55:04 GMT
NNTP-Posting-Date: Thu, 17 Oct 2002 06:55:04 PDT
Organization: EarthLink Inc. -- http://www.EarthLink.net
Tom Bruhns wrote:
> firstname.lastname@example.org (carltons) wrote in message news:...
>>All of the suggestions other than the use of a zener of any sort sound
>>good to me. A Zener is okay for ESD protection as a last resort, but
>>other than that, it has gone the way of the 6AL5 tube diode. Oh yeah! I
>>almost forgot. They make dandy wideband noise sources. BTW, I'm using
>>the term zener loosely. I'm including the diodes rated above 5.6v, which
>>are technically avalanche diodes.
> I'd say you're under-rating the zener's usefulness for things other
> than ESD protection and noise generation (and perhaps even over-rating
> it for those). There are some things they do very well for low cost
> which would be quite difficult to do other ways. ;-) (Though we
> haven't seen any confirmation from the OP, his application is likely
> not one of the good ones, of course!)
The "buried zener" of buried zener voltage reference fame is a zener
nonetheless and exceeds the performance of band gap techniques in some
respects. Also, the zener is the basis for the semiconductor TVS
technology. Many analog circuit topologies hinge on the non-linear
resistance characteristic of the zener such as amplitude stabilization
of RC opamp oscillators and lossless level shifting. Zener manufacturing
technology has not remained static either with 1% tolerance, sharper
knees, and lower reverse currents becoming readily available.
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