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. 168-6084
Mfr. Part No.BU941ZPFI
$4.076
Each (In a Tube of 30)
units
NPN 15 A 350 V 5 V TO-3PF Through Hole 3 - Single 1 300 2.7 V - 2 V
RS Stock No. 680-7220
Mfr. Part No.A2982SLWTR-T
$4.71
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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NPN + PNP 500 mA 50 V - SOIC W Surface Mount 20 - - 8 - - - 2 V
RS Stock No. 419-1144
Mfr. Part No.BU941ZPFI
$6.23
Each
units
NPN 15 A 350 V 5 V TO-3PF Through Hole 3 - Single 1 300 2.7 V - 2 V
RS Stock No. 177-5536
Mfr. Part No.A2982SLWTR-T
$2.127
Each (On a Reel of 1000)
units
NPN + PNP 500 mA 50 V - SOIC W Surface Mount 20 - - 8 - - - 2 V
RS Stock No. 103-1078
Mfr. Part No.TIP122
$0.276
Each (In a Tube of 50)
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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. 100-3837
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003AN
$0.986
Each (In a Tube of 25)
units
NPN 500 mA 50 V 50 V PDIP Through Hole 16 - Common Emitter 7 - - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 124-5325
Mfr. Part No.MJH11022G
$4.364
Each (In a Tube of 30)
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NPN 15 A 250 V 5 V TO-247 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 100 3.8 V 250 V 4 V
RS Stock No. 790-5397
Mfr. Part No.MJH11022G
$5.63
Each (In a Pack of 2)
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NPN 15 A 250 V 5 V TO-247 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 100 3.8 V 250 V 4 V
RS Stock No. 545-2513
Mfr. Part No.BDW42G
$1.342
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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NPN 15 A 100 V 5 V TO-220AB Through Hole 3 - Single 1 250 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 102-4104
Mfr. Part No.TIP147
$2.149
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. 486-0301
Mfr. Part No.TIP147
$3.01
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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. 163-2366
Mfr. Part No.BDW42G
$0.919
Each (In a Tube of 50)
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NPN 15 A 100 V 5 V TO-220AB Through Hole 3 - Single 1 250 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 122-0071
Mfr. Part No.MJ11016G
$8.057
Each (In a Tray of 100)
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NPN 30 A 120 V 5 V TO-204 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 200 5 V 120 V 4 V
RS Stock No. 168-6054
Mfr. Part No.TIP125
$0.439
Each (In a Tube of 50)
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PNP 5 A 60 V 5 V TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 1000 - 60 V 4 V
RS Stock No. 102-4089
Mfr. Part No.TIP142T
$1.511
Each (In a Tube of 50)
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NPN 10 A 100 V 5 V TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 774-3653
Mfr. Part No.TIP120G
$0.844
Each (In a Pack of 10)
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NPN 8 A 60 V 5 V TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 1000 - 60 V 4 V
RS Stock No. 922-2987
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003ADR
$0.34
Each (On a Reel of 2500)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V - SOIC Surface Mount 16 - Common Emitter 7 - - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 485-8667
Mfr. Part No.TIP142T
$2.412
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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NPN 10 A 100 V 5 V TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 485-9058
Mfr. Part No.BDW94C
$1.382
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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PNP 12 A 100 V - TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 100 4 V 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 121-8478
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003AD
$0.746
Each (In a Tube of 40)
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NPN 500 mA 50 V 50 V SOIC Surface Mount 16 - Common Emitter 7 - - - 1.6 V
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