Optocoupler Interfacibg With 8051 Microcontroller


An optocoupler is a device commonly used to galvanically separate microcontroller’s electronics from any potentially dangerous current or voltage in its surroundings. Optocouplers usually have one, two or four light sources (LED diodes) on their input while on their output, opposite to diodes, there is the same number of elements sensitive to light (phototransistors, photo-thyristors or photo-triacs). The point is that an optocoupler uses a short optical transmission path to transfer a signal between the elements of circuit, while keeping them electrically isolated. This isolation makes sense only if diodes and photo-sensitive elements are separately powered. In this way, the microcontroller and expensive additional electronics are completely protected from high voltage and noises which are the most common cause of destroying, damaging or unstable operation of electronic devices in practice. The most frequently used optocouplers are those with phototransistors on their outputs. When using the optocoupler with internal base-to-pin 6 connection (there are also optocouplers without it), the base can be left unconnected. An optional connection which lessens the effects of noises by eliminating very short pulses is presented by the broken line in the figure.



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