Integrated Circuits

Integrated Circuits (also known as IC or Chip) are nothing but electronic circuits shrunken into smaller size. There are some electronic circuits which we need to use very frequently to achieve our project like logic circuits (AND, NOT, OR GATES), amplifiers, timers, etc. For instance if we want to make a NOT Gate, we need a transistor and few resistors to construct it. If it’s just single NOT gate that we require then ok. But what if we need 20 NOT gates for making the device? We would have to waste time building each NOT gate and also it takes up lot of precious space on our device and weight also. So we use a NOT gate IC like 7404 instead. IC 7404 contains 4 built-in NOT gates and we can use 5 of these instead of several transistors and save a lot of space and time also.
NOT Gate Circuit
IC 7404 containing 4 NOT gates

Well we need to thank the guy who developed ICs, Werner Jacobi. If he didn’t do that, we would be carrying our mobile phones like a suitcase with a handle bar. Not just the mobile phones, every electronic device around us contains ICs in them. Your T.V., digital clocks, watch, microwave oven, computer all contain Integrated Circuits in them.
Integrated circuits are of different types like memory ICs, Regulator ICs, analog, digital, etc. The development of ICs is done by VLSI (Very Large Integration Scale Integration) method where billions of transistors are being integrated into single chip. Who knows, maybe in future we may have a super computer in our pockets.
For more details about ICs and its history, click here
Some common ICs which we would need for our projects are
1.555 Timer
2. Voltage Regulator IC 7805
3. Op-Amp IC LM324
4. Motor Driver IC L293D
5. NOT gate IC 7404


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