Semiconductor Devices?

Electronic devices such as diodes, transistors, and integrated circuits are often referred to as semiconductor devices. Why are they called semiconductors?

Thanks in advanced.

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  • 8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Just brake the word down..a "conductor" allows free passage of electricity...anything that is "semi" allows for partial passage. In diodes electricity passes one way but blocked the other way...often used in a "full wave bridge" to change AC current to DC current. The simple Transistor is a switch that opens and closes when a certain low voltage is applied vs. a higher voltage. they use an precise insulator to conduct voltages therefore they are "semi" conducters.

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  • Anonymous
    8 years ago

    Semiconductor devices are electronic components that exploit the electronic properties of semiconductor materials, principally silicon, germanium, and gallium arsenide, as well as organic semiconductors. Semiconductor devices have replaced thermionic devices (vacuum tubes) in most applications. They use electronic conduction in the solid state as opposed to the gaseous state or thermionic emission in a high vacuum.

    Semiconductor devices are manufactured both as single discrete devices and as integrated circuits (ICs), which consist of a number—from a few (as low as two) to billions—of devices manufactured and interconnected on a single semiconductor substrate.

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  • ?
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    A semiconductor is a material with electrical conductivity due to electron flow (as opposed to ionic conductivity) intermediate in magnitude between that of a conductor and an insulator.

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  • 8 years ago

    They only allow electricity to travel in one direction, not both ways. See an excellent explanation in my source, below.

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