A type of electronic component that is normally intended to conduct current in only one direction. They are a P-N junction device with non-linear characteristics. They were also the first semiconductor electronic devices created.

The Symbol for a diode is a triangle with a bar on one end, modifiers are added to signify special types of diodes.

Diodes are generally used to rectify power (Turn AC into DC) or to direct current in the way intended. Various kinds of Diodes are used for other functions as well.

There are many types of diodes and here is as brief description of most:

Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) are used to create light.
Zener Diodes are used to regulate voltage (Reverse biased).
Tunnel Diodes are used to generate RF oscillations.
Varactor Diodes are used to electronically tune radio/tv receivers.
Photodiodes are used to detect light (light sensors, photocells, remote controller receivers).
(SCRs) Silicon Controlled Rectifiers are interesting diode devices commonly seen in dimmers.

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