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. 419-1144
Mfr. Part No.BU941ZPFI
$6.81
Each
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NPN 15 A 350 V 5 V TO-3PF Through Hole 3 - Single 1 300 2.7 V - 2 V
RS Stock No. 168-6084
Mfr. Part No.BU941ZPFI
$5.42
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. 177-5536
Mfr. Part No.A2982SLWTR-T
$2.157
Each (On a Reel of 1000)
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NPN + PNP 500 mA 50 V - SOIC W Surface Mount 20 - - 8 - - - 2 V
RS Stock No. 680-7220
Mfr. Part No.A2982SLWTR-T
$3.93
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
NPN + PNP 500 mA 50 V - SOIC W Surface Mount 20 - - 8 - - - 2 V
RS Stock No. 103-1078
Mfr. Part No.TIP122
$0.93
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
$1.11
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. 436-8451
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003AN
$1.27
Each
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NPN 500 mA 50 V 50 V PDIP Through Hole 16 - Common Emitter 7 - - - 1.6 V
RS Stock No. 790-5397
Mfr. Part No.MJH11022G
$6.15
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. 124-5325
Mfr. Part No.MJH11022G
$4.91
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. 545-2513
Mfr. Part No.BDW42G
$1.37
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
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
$2.00
Each (In a Tube of 30)
units
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
$2.55
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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
$1.16
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. 103-5146
Mfr. Part No.TIP120G
$0.863
Each (In a Tube of 50)
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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. 485-8667
Mfr. Part No.TIP142T
$2.514
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. 485-8673
Mfr. Part No.TIP147T
$2.53
Each (In a Pack of 5)
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PNP 10 A 100 V 5 V TO-220 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 500 - 100 V 3 V
RS Stock No. 251-3299
Mfr. Part No.TIP125
$1.07
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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. 166-2727
Mfr. Part No.KSP13BU
$0.066
Each (In a Bag of 10000)
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NPN 500 mA 30 V 10 V TO-92 Through Hole 3 - Single 1 5000 - 30 V 1.5 V
RS Stock No. 121-8478
Mfr. Part No.ULN2003AD
$0.985
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
RS Stock No. 714-1167
Mfr. Part No.ULN2803A
$2.10
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NPN 500 mA 50 V 50 V PDIP Through Hole 18 - Common Emitter 8 1000 - - 1.1 V
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