Introducing IC (Integrated Circuit), Functions of IC and Types of IC

By | September 23, 2021

Introducing  IC (Integrated Circuit)

IC (integrated circuit) is a combination of hundreds of thousands, even millions of electronic components such as transistors, diodes, resistors, and capacitors that are packaged in one component package, which are combined into one. Although it has many electronic components in it, the IC has a small shape and size.

Integrated Circuit - IC

The number of transistors integrated into ICs has increased tremendously since their creation. The number of transistors in an IC can roughly double every 2 years. This phenomenon is known as Moore’s Law, and is often cited as an explanation for the exponential growth of technology over the last 50 years.

In today’s electronic equipment, IC also has an important role. One of the most prominent IC applications is on smartphones, laptops and Console Games.

With the IC, the electronic equipment that uses it will have a small and portable form.
It should always be noted that the IC is an active electronic component that is sensitive to the influence of ESD (Electrostatic Discharge).

So, to prevent damage to the IC, special handling is needed in it.

History of IC (Integrated Circuit)

This IC technology was invented in 1950 by Jack Kilby of Texas Instruments USA and Robert Noyce of Fairchild Semiconductor USA. The first customer of this new invention was the US Air Force. In 2000 Jack Kilby won the Nobel Prize in Physics for miniature electronic circuits.

A year and a half after Kilby demonstrated his IC design. Then Robert Noyce of Fairchild Semiconductor Limited came up with his own integrated circuit. His model solved many of the practical problems that previous Kilby devices had.

Robert Noyce’s IC is made of silicon while Kilby’s is made of germanium. Jack Kilby and Robert Noyce both received US patents for their inventions on ICs. After several years of legal trouble, the two companies finally wisely decided to license their technology and create a huge global market.

IC function

Signal and power booster

The simplest IC functions are signal amplifier, power, and power. In electronic devices such as radio, IC is used to increase signal capture power. The same is true of devices such as televisions.


IC is also capable of acting as a regulator. An example is the IC which is used to determine the volume of the sound. In addition, the IC is also in charge of managing the voltage applied to other components so that it is balanced.

ICs for microprocessors

IC is a single chip that consists of many components to form a circuit. Because it’s so small, you won’t see it directly. The chip is also called a microprocessor or limited to a chipset for the purposes of high-level electronic devices.

IC Types

There are two main types of ICs: digital ICs or analog ICs. These two types of ICs are discussed in detail below.

Analog IC

In this type of IC, the input and output of both signals are continuous. The output signal level depends on the input signal level and the output signal level is a linear function of the input signal level. Linear ICs or analog ICs are most often used as audio frequency amplifiers and radio frequency amplifiers. Op amps, voltage regulators, comparators, and timers are also well-known examples of linear ICs or analog ICs.

analog IC

Analog ICs or Linear ICs are generally used for:

• Power Amplifier
• Signal Amplifier
• Operational Amplifier (Op Amp)
• Micro Signal Amplifier (Microwave Amplifier)
• RF and IF Amplifier (RF and IF Amplifier)
• Voltage Comparator
• Multiplier
• Radio Frequency Receiver (Radio Receiver)
• Voltage Regulator (Voltage Regulator)

Digital IC

Logic gates, such as AND gates, OR gates, NAND gates, XOR gates, flip-flops, counters; microprocessors are some well-known examples of digital ICs. This IC operates with binary data such as 0 or 1.

Usually in digital circuits. The number 0 represents 0 V and 1 indicates +5 V. Digital ICs are commonly used in many electronics projects, and are often available as an add-on to Arduino beginner kits.

digital IC
Digital ICs generally function as:

• Flip-flop
• Logic Gates
• Timer
• Counter
• Multiplexers
• Calculator
• Memory
• Clock
• Microprocessor (Microprocessor)
• Microcontroller

Mixed IC

The next IC is a combination of analog and digital in one component. In general, this type functions as a converter, which converts analog to digital and vice versa. Some electronic devices really need this type of IC to ensure the signal matches the system used.

Mixed IC
Another type which is still in the mixed category is one IC for two functions. These components are more sophisticated than just a converter. This type of IC is able to capture and manage two types of signals without using two different components.

IC Type Based on Number of Components

The main component of the IC is the transistor. These transistors may be bipolar or field effect depending on the IC application.

Along with technological advances from day to day, the number of transistors incorporated in one IC chip is also increasing. Based on the number of transistors incorporated in one chip, ICs are categorized into five groups, namely:

Small Scale Integration (SSI) where the number of transistors embedded in one IC chip is up to 100.
Medium Scale Integration (MSI) where the number of transistors embedded in a single IC chip is from 100 to 1000.
Large Scale Integration (LSI) where the number of transistors embedded in a single IC chip is from 1000 to 20,000.
Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) where the number of transistors embedded in a single IC chip is from 20,000 to 10,000,000.
Ultra Large Scale Integration (ULSI) where the number of transistors embedded in a single IC chip is from 10,000,000 to 1,000,000.

Based on the active devices used in the IC, it can be further classified as bipolar IC and unipolar IC. In a bipolar IC the main component is a bipolar junction transistor, while in a unipolar IC the main component is a field effect transistor or MOSFET.

Types of ICs Based on IC Manufacturing Process

There are three types of IC manufacturing technologies. The first is monolithic technology and the second is hybrid technology.


In the monolithic technique, all the electronic components and their interconnects are made together into a single silicon chip. This technology is applied when identical ICs are to be produced on a large scale. Monolithic ICs are cheap but reliable.

Thick films and thin films IC

The next type of IC is thick film IC where only passive components are available. This type requires another IC that contains active components. In a separate way, the function is more flexible.

Hybrid ICs

The hybrid IC is a combination of monolithic ICs and thick film ICs. In hybrid ICs, the separate components are attached to a ceramic material and are interconnected by a wire or metallized pattern.

IC Type Based on Package

1. SIP (Single In-line Packages)

SIP (Single In-line Packages) is an IC chip package that contains only one row of connection pins. This type can also be called a single pin inline package.

single in line packages IC

2. DIP (Dual In-line Packages)

DIP (Dual In-line Packages) is a chip package with a rectangular shape and has two rows of parallel pins as electrical connectors.

dual in-line package IC

The placement of the DIP is usually through a hole attached to a printed circuit board (PCB) or inserted into a socket.

The DIP IC was invented by Bryant Rogers, Don Forbes and Rex Rice of Fairchild R&D in 1964.

3. SOP (Small Outline Packages)

IC SOP (Small Outline Packages) basically have similarities with the type of DIP (Dual In-line Packages).
The difference is only in its shape, IC SOP has a slim and thin physical. The placement of the SOP IC is usually attached to the bottom layer of the PCB.

small outline package IC


4. QFP (Quad Flat Packages)

QFP (Quad Flat Packages) is an IC package whose surface has pins that extend like wings from all four sides.
The pins found on the QFP IC generally consist of 32 to 304 pins with a small size.
In addition, the QFP IC has two variations, such as Low Quad Flat Packages and Thin Quad Flat Packages.

quad flat package IC

5. BGA (Ball Grid Arrays)

IC BGA (Ball Grid Arrays) is a type of package that has a circular shape. This BGA IC is usually permanently installed in electronic devices such as microprocessors.
BGA IC has many pins that can be connected compared to other types. In addition, the performance of this IC is better and has high speed.

Ball Grid Arrays IC

The advantages and disanvantage IC

The advantages of IC (Integrated Circuit) include:

The size is quite small, practically about 20,000 electronic components can be combined in one square inch IC chip.
Many complex circuits are made on a single chip and thus simplify the design of complex electronic circuits. It can also improve performance.
• Reliability or high IC reliability
• It is available at a low price due to its mass production.
• IC consumes very little power.
• Higher operating speed due to the absence of parasitic capacitance effects.
• Very easy to replace from the main circuit.

Disadvantages of Integrated Circuits or IC

Disadvantages of integrated circuits (ICs) include:
• Due to their small size, the IC cannot dissipate heat at the required rate as the current in it increases. That is why ICs are often damaged due to overcurrent flowing through them.
• Inductors and Transformers cannot be combined in an IC.