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Schematic Symbols

Amante R. Garcia
I. Wires and Connections
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Wire To pass current very


easily from one part of a
circuit to another.

Wires joined A 'blob' should be drawn


where wires are
connected (joined).
Wires not joined crossing wires and bridge
symbol
II. Power Supplies
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Cell Supplies electrical


energy.
The larger terminal (on
the left) is positive (+).
Battery Supplies electrical
energy. A battery is more
than one cell.
DC supply DC = Direct Current,
always flowing in one
direction.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

AC supply AC = Alternating Current,


continually changing
direction.

Fuse A safety device which will


'blow' (melt) if the
current flowing through it
exceeds a specified
value.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Transformer Two coils of wire linked by an


iron core. Transformers are
used to step up (increase) and
step down (decrease) AC
voltages.
Earth A connection to earth.
(Ground) For many electronic
circuits this is the 0V
(zero volts) of the power
supply,
III. Output devices
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Lamp A transducer which


(lighting) converts electrical energy
to light.

Lamp This symbol is used for a


(indicator) lamp which is an
indicator, for example a
warning light on a car
dashboard.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Heater A transducer which


converts electrical energy
to heat.

Motor A transducer which


converts electrical energy
to kinetic energy
(motion).
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Bell A transducer which


converts electrical energy
to sound.

Buzzer A transducer which


converts electrical energy
to sound.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Inductor A coil of wire which


(Coil, creates a magnetic field
Solenoid) when current passes
through it.
IV. Switches
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Push Switch A push switch allows


(push-to- current to flow only when
make) the button is pressed.

Push-to-Break This type of push switch


Switch is normally closed (on), it
is open (off) only when
the button is pressed.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

On-Off Switch SPST = Single Pole,


(SPST) Single Throw.

2-way Switch SPDT = Single Pole,


(SPDT) Double Throw.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Dual On-Off DPST = Double Pole,


Switch Single Throw.
(DPST)

Reversing DPDT = Double Pole,


Switch Double Throw.
(DPDT)
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Relay An electrically operated


switch.
NO = Normally Open,
COM = Common,
NC = Normally Closed.
V. Resistors
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Fixed Resistor A resistor restricts the


flow of current.

Variable This type of variable


Resistor resistor with 2 contacts
(Rheostat) (a rheostat) is usually
used to control current.
Example is adjusting
motor speed.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Variable This type of variable


Resistor resistor with 3 contacts
(Potentiometer) (a potentiometer) is
usually used to control
voltage.
Variable It is designed to be set
Resistor when the circuit is made
(Preset) and then left without
further adjustment.
VI. Capacitors
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Capacitor A capacitor stores electric


charge. A capacitor is
used with a resistor in a
timing circuit. It can also
be used as a filter, to
block DC signals but pass
AC signals.
Capacitor, It can be used as to filter
polarised and smooth the AC
voltage.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Variable A variable capacitor is


Capacitor used in a radio tuner.

Trimmer For precised control in a


Capacitor tuning circuit.It is
designed to be set when
the circuit is made and
then left without further
adjustment.
VIII. Diodes
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Diode A device which only


allows current to flow in
one direction.

LED A transducer which


Light Emitting converts electrical energy
Diode to light. Use a status
indicator in circuits.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Zener Diode A special diode which is


used to maintain a fixed
voltage across its
terminals.
Photodiode A light-sensitive diode.
Used in optical circuits.
IX. Transistors
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Transistor A transistor amplifies


NPN current. It can be used
with other components to
make an amplifier or
switching circuit.
Transistor A transistor amplifies
PNP current. It can be used
with other components to
make an amplifier or
switching circuit.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Photo A light-sensitive
transistor transistor.
X. Audio and Radio Devices
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Microphone An input transducer


which converts sound to
electrical energy.

Earphone An output transducer


which converts electrical
energy to sound.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Loudspeaker An output transducer


which converts electrical
energy to sound.

Piezo An input transducer


Transducer which converts electrical
energy to sound.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Amplifier An amplifier circuit with


(general symbol) one input. It is a block
diagram symbol that
represents a circuit rather
than just one component.
Aerial A device which is
(Antenna) designed to receive or
transmit radio signals. It
is also known as an
antenna.
XI. Meters and Oscilloscope
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Voltmeter A voltmeter is used to


measure voltage.

Ammeter An ammeter is used to


measure current.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Galvanometer A galvanometer is a very


sensitive meter which is
used to measure tiny
currents, usually 1mA or
less.
Ohmmeter An ohmmeter is used to
measure resistance.
Component Circuit Symbol Function

Oscilloscope An oscilloscope is used to


display the shape of
electrical signals and it
can be used to measure
their voltage and time
period.
XII. Sensors (input devices)
Component Circuit Symbol Function

LDR A transducer which


converts brightness
(light) to resistance (an
electrical property).
LDR = Light Dependent
Resistor
Thermistor A transducer which
converts temperature
(heat) to resistance (an
electrical property).
References
 Mitchel E. Schultz. Grob’s Basic Electronics. Tenth
edition.International edition. 2007. Mc Graw Hill.
 http://www.kpsec.freeuk.com/symbol.htm