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One Way Resistor?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by chris57828, Apr 1, 2012.

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  1. chris57828

    chris57828

    7
    0
    Feb 10, 2012
    Is there such a thing as a one way resistor?

    Can I attach a resistor to some wire and allow current to pass through but not back?

    Chris
     
  2. Harald Kapp

    Harald Kapp Moderator Moderator

    11,644
    2,691
    Nov 17, 2011
    For the first part: Yes, you can attach a resistor to a single wire.
    For the second part: no, electrical current needs a closed circuit.

    Maybe what you're thinking of is a diode?

    Harald
     
  3. timothy48342

    timothy48342

    218
    1
    Nov 28, 2011
    Well, no.
    But there are one-way components.

    A diode allows current to pass one way (almost) unhindered and (mostly) stops current in the other direction.

    It's not a resister, but could be used with a resistor.
    -tim
     
  4. timothy48342

    timothy48342

    218
    1
    Nov 28, 2011
    oht! Harald got to it first.
    I didn't think of the whole loop. Attaching a diode to the resistor while it is in the circuit won't do it. You whould have to break the connection and put the diode in series with the resistor. The resister still does it's job and the diode blocks the flow in one direction. The diode might also reduce the flow slightly in the desired direction. (voltage drop)

    --tim
     
  5. chris57828

    chris57828

    7
    0
    Feb 10, 2012
    To be honest, on the wire in question I don't need a resistor as the current is regulated with a resistor further down the line.

    I am using a breadboard. Can I simply use a diode on its own in series with the wire to prevent reverse flow?

    Are these diodes expensive?

    Chris
     
  6. timothy48342

    timothy48342

    218
    1
    Nov 28, 2011
    Diodes are cheap, cheap, cheap. (well, some diodes) If you can just replace the resistor with the diode, fine.

    One thing to consider is power disapation. (heat) A diode can burn out if enough current flows through.

    Buy more than one. Most of the cost of this kind of component is packaging and shipping.

    --tim
     
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