What are SMD Resistors? [caption id="attachment_944" align="alignright" width="103"] SMD resistors on a circuit board from a USB memory stick[/caption] SMD stands for Surface Mounted Device. An SMD is any electronic component that is made to use with SMT, or Surface Mount Technology. SMT was developed to meet the ongoing desire for printed circuit board manufacture to use smaller components and be faster, more efficient, and cheaper. SMDs are smaller than their traditional counterparts. They are often square, rectangular or oval in shape, with very low profiles. Instead of wire leads that go through the PCB, SMD's have small leads or pins that are soldered to pads on the surface of the board. This eliminates the need for holes in the board, and lets both sides of the board be more fully used. The manufacture of PCBs using SMT is similar to that for components with leads. Small pads of silver or gold plate or tin-lead are placed on the board for attaching the components. Solder paste, a mixture of flux and small balls of solder, is then applied to the mounting pads by a machine similar to a computer printer. Once the PCB is prepared, SMDs are placed on it using a machine called a pick-and-place machine. The components are fed to the machine in long tubes, on rolls of tape or in trays. These machines can attach thousands of components per hour; one manufacturer advertises a rate as high as 60,000cph. The board is then sent through a reflow soldering oven. In this oven, the board is slowly brought up to a temperature that will melt the solder. Once cooled, the board is cleaned to remove solder flux residue and stray solder particles. A visual inspection checks for missing or out-of-position parts and that the board is clean. SMD...
There are a lot of different resistor types, all with their own applications, characteristics and construction. This page lists the different resistor types which are described on the resistor guide. Fixed resistors The fixed resistor type is the most common resistor, when people talk about a resistor they most probably mean a fixed resistor. The picture to the right shows an axial carbon film resistor, the most common type. Fixed resistors have a constant resistance value. Different resistor materials are used for fixed resistors. For all resistor types the used materials has influence on the resistor properties like the tolerance, cost and noise. Fixed resistors are available in axial and SMD packages. Variable resistors There are several variable resistor types, their general property is that the resistance value is adjustable. Most variable resistors are adjusted by mechanical movement (linear or rotary). When they are used as a variable voltage divider, they are called potentiometers. When they are used as a variable resistance to control the current in a circuit, they are called rheostats. Digital potentiometers are controlled electronically instead of by mechanical action. In general variable resistors have a higher tolerance of 20% compared to fixed resistors where 5% is the most common. Thermistors Thermistors are resistors of which the resistance changes significantly when temperature changes. Different thermistor types exist, the two most common types are the NTC and PTC thermistor. NTC thermistors decrease in resistance when the temperature rises, while PTC thermistors increase in resistance when the temperature rises. Thermistors are often used as temperature sensors or thermal protection devices. Varistors Varistors have a non-linear resistance which is dependent on the voltage over the varistor. Above a certain threshold voltage the resistance of a varistor drops very fast. Different varistor types exist, but nowadays the MOV varistor is the...