Question: What Is Avalanche And Zener Breakdown?

What is meant by avalanche breakdown?

Avalanche breakdown is a phenomenon that can occur in both insulating and semiconducting materials.

It is a form of electric current multiplication that can allow very large currents within materials which are otherwise good insulators.

It is a type of electron avalanche..

Is Zener breakdown reversible?

Zener diode breakdown is reversible. i.e. it does not destroy the diode as long as you do not exceed the power rating of the diode. … Avalanche diode (normal rectifier diode)breakdown is also reversible if you do not exceed the power rating of the diode.

Why is zener diode reverse biased?

Zener diode always used in reverse bias condition because.. A reverse biased ,zener diode exhibits controlled the breakdown & allows current to keep voltage across zener diode close to the zener breakdown voltage.

Why do we use zener diode?

Zener diodes are used for voltage regulation, as reference elements, surge suppressors, and in switching applications and clipper circuits. The load voltage equals breakdown voltage VZ of the diode. The series resistor limits the current through the diode and drops the excess voltage when the diode is conducting.

What will be the resistance offered by Zener diode in the breakdown region?

A current limiting resistance should be connected in series with the Zener diode to protect it against the damage due to excessive heating. In Zener breakdown, the breakdown voltage depends on the temperature of P-N junction. The breakdown voltage decreases with increase in the junction temperature.

What is difference between avalanche and zener breakdown?

The main difference between Zener breakdown and avalanche breakdown is their mechanism of occurrence. Zener breakdown occurs because of the high electric field whereas, the avalanche breakdown occurs because of the collision of free electrons with atoms. Both these breakdowns can occur simultaneously.

What type of temperature coefficient does the avalanche breakdown has?

In silicon diodes up to about 5.6 volts, the Zener effect is the predominant effect and shows a marked negative temperature coefficient. Above 5.6 volts, the avalanche effect becomes predominant and exhibits a positive temperature coefficient.

What is the main cause of Zener breakdown?

What is the main cause of Zener breakdown? Zener diode is fabricated by heavily doping p-side and n-side. So, even for a small reverse bias voltage, the electric field of the junction is extremely high. … The electrons emitted account for high current flow, causing a breakdown called zener breakdown.

What is meant by zener voltage?

The Zener voltage is the voltage at which the depletion region completely vanish. The reverse bias applies across the diode increases the intensity of electric field across the depletion region. Thus, it allows the electrons to move from the valence band of P-type material to the conduction band of N-type material.

What causes avalanche breakdown?

Avalanche breakdown is caused by impact ionization of electron-hole pairs. A very little current flows under reverse bias conditions and depletion region increases. The electric field in the depletion region of a diode can be very high. Electron/holes that enter the depletion region undergo a tremendous acceleration.

What happens in Zener breakdown?

Zener effect is a type of electricalbreakdown in a reverse biased p-n diode in which the electric field enables tunneling of electrons from the valence to the conduction band of a semiconductor, leading to a large number of free minority carriers, which suddenly increase the reverse current.

What is minimum Zener current?

The minimum Zener knee current, Izk, is used to guarantee a minimum voltage that is less than the Zener voltage. Instead, the current flowing through the Zener must be greater than the maximum reverse current, abbreviated Izr, to absolutely guarantee that the Zener diode will produce the Zener voltage, Vz.

What is Zener effect and Avalanche effect?

The Zener effect is distinct from avalanche breakdown. … The avalanche breakdown occurs in lightly doped junctions, which produce a wider depletion region. Temperature increase in the junction increases the contribution of the Zener effect to breakdown, and decreases the contribution of the avalanche effect.

What is Zener break down voltage?

When reverse biased voltage applied to the zener diode reaches zener voltage, it starts allowing large amount of electric current. At this point, a small increase in reverse voltage will rapidly increases the electric current. Because of this sudden rise in electric current, breakdown occurs called zener breakdown.

How does a Zener diode fail?

Interestingly enough, when Zener diodes fail due to excessive power dissipation, they usually fail shorted rather than open. A diode failed in this manner is readily detected: it drops almost zero voltage when biased either way, like a piece of wire.

What is the difference between a diode and a Zener diode?

Diodes are used to let electricity flow in a single direction through a circuit. Zener diodes differ from other types of diodes in that, when you connect them in the reverse direction in a circuit, such that current flows the other way across a diode, they let a small leakage current flow.

What is breakdown and its types?

Avalanche breakdown occurs in a pn junction diode which is moderately doped and has a thick junction (means its depletion layer width is high). Avalanche breakdown usually occurs when we apply a high reverse voltage across the diode (obviously higher than the zener breakdown voltage,say Vz).