The blocking diode is a helpful tool for limiting the direction energy can flow through a wire to just one direction. It uses a semiconductor P/N junction achieve this behavior.
Q: What is the purpose of a blocking diode?
A: A blocking diode enables energy to flow one direction but not the other. i.e. – From a generator to a battery, but not from the battery back to the generator.
Watch this video example:
Q: How do I know what size diode I need to buy?
A: The size of the diode is determined by a few factors
- The maximum rated temperature that your diode can run at
- The maximum Voltage rating of the diode
- The maximum operating current of the diode
- The efficiency of the diode
- The ability for the diode to be mounted to a heat sink or an electrical panel
- COST: Because diodes get more expensive as they get bigger in size, most people try to find the cheapest diode that can run at the highest temperature and the highest current without burning up
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If you want to learn about the P/N junction you can study up on quantum physics or do a search on Youtube for more information.