Darlington Pairs

What are Darlington Pairs?

Darlington pairs, also called Darlington transistors, are a package of two standard BJT transistors (bipolar junction transistor). One of the transistors is high-gain while the other is high current. They are used to amplify weak signals from one circuit to another circuit or microprocessor. This means that the tiny current from a sensor or micro controller I/O pin can be amplified to drive a large load. Darlington pairs can also be operated as an ON/OFF switch.

Darlington pairs work together as a single transistor but feature a much higher current gain. They also offer high input impedance in comparison to single transistors.

How do they work?

The emitter of one transistor is connected to the base of the other transistor which effectively creates one transistor.

Why should you use a Darlington pair?

Darlington pairs provide a very high current gain. Working as two transistors within one package, Darlington pairs have a very compact footprint which takes up minimal space on a board.

What applications do you use them in?

With high current gain, Darlington transistors are well suited to power applications such as driving motors and relays. Darlington pairs are ideal for application in display drivers, audio outputs, power regulators, light sensors, touch sensors and power supply outputs. It is not recommended to use them in applications that require high frequency as it is not possible to shut the base current off immediately.

Different types

Darlington pairs can consist of either NPN (negative-positive-negative) transistors, PNP (positive-negative-positive) transistors or both.

Darlington pairs are typically supplied in one of two ways. You can purchase them as an array (called a Darlington array) within a single integrated circuit (IC) package, or as a simple single discrete component.

Standard package type examples include SOT-23, SOIC, TO-220 and TO-252 (DPAK).

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Description Price Transistor Type Maximum Continuous Collector Current Maximum Collector Emitter Voltage Maximum Emitter Base Voltage Package Type Mounting Type Pin Count Configuration Transistor Configuration Number of Elements per Chip Minimum DC Current Gain Maximum Base Emitter Saturation Voltage Maximum Collector Base Voltage Maximum Collector Emitter Saturation Voltage
RS Stock No. 168-6450
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003A
HK$1.99
Each (In a Tube of 25)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - PDIP Through Hole 16 - Common Emitter 7 1000 - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 686-8209
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003A
HK$3.323
Each (In a Pack of 20)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - PDIP Through Hole 16 - Common Emitter 7 1000 - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 486-0294
Mfr. Part No.TIP142
HK$13.754
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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NPN 10 A 100 V 5 V TO-247 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 102-4091
Mfr. Part No.TIP142
HK$10.91
Each (In a Tube of 30)
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NPN 10 A 100 V 5 V TO-247 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 168-6833
Mfr. Part No.ULN2803A
HK$5.195
Each (In a Tube of 20)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V 50 V PDIP Through Hole 18 - Common Emitter 8 1000 - - 1.1 V
RS Stock No. 714-1167
Mfr. Part No.ULN2803A
HK$8.426
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V 50 V PDIP Through Hole 18 - Common Emitter 8 1000 - - 1.1 V
RS Stock No. 919-6472
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003D1013TR
HK$1.171
Each (On a Reel of 2500)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - SOIC Surface Mount 16 - Common Emitter 7 1000 - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 168-6832
Mfr. Part No.ULN2802A
HK$7.209
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - PDIP Through Hole 18 - Common Emitter 8 - - - 1.1 V
RS Stock No. 714-1164
Mfr. Part No.ULN2802A
HK$7.538
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - PDIP Through Hole 18 - Common Emitter 8 - - - 1.1 V
RS Stock No. 313-3197
Mfr. Part No.BU931P
HK$22.24
Each
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NPN 15 A 400 V 5 V TO-247 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 300 2.5 V - 1.8 V
RS Stock No. 102-4097
Mfr. Part No.BU931P
HK$18.47
Each (In a Tube of 30)
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NPN 15 A 400 V 5 V TO-247 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 300 2.5 V - 1.8 V
RS Stock No. 426-229
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003D1013TR
HK$3.052
Each (In a Pack of 10)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - SOIC Surface Mount 16 - Common Emitter 7 1000 - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 486-0301
Mfr. Part No.TIP147
HK$16.90
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PNP 10 A 100 V 5 V TO-247 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 102-4104
Mfr. Part No.TIP147
HK$13.461
Each (In a Tube of 30)
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PNP 10 A 100 V 5 V TO-247 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 168-6442
Mfr. Part No.ULN2001D1013TR
HK$1.419
Each (On a Reel of 2500)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - SOIC Surface Mount 16 - Common Emitter 7 1000 - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 486-0288
Mfr. Part No.TIP132
HK$8.98
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NPN 8 A 100 V 5 V TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 4 V
RS Stock No. 103-1078
Mfr. Part No.TIP122
HK$2.423
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NPN 8 A 100 V 5 V TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 1000 - 100 V 4 V
RS Stock No. 686-8155
Mfr. Part No.ULN2001D1013TR
HK$3.06
Each (In a Pack of 20)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - SOIC Surface Mount 16 - Common Emitter 7 1000 - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 102-4096
Mfr. Part No.TIP132
HK$6.987
Each (In a Tube of 50)
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NPN 8 A 100 V 5 V TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 4 V
RS Stock No. 485-9042
Mfr. Part No.BDW93C
HK$7.564
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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NPN 12 A 100 V - TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 100 4 V 100 V 3 V