555 Timer Projects

Simple Lamp Dimmer Circuit using 555 Timer IC

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Overview: Lamp Dimmer Circuit using IC 555 Timer

In this project, we will learn about a simple and efficient PWM Lamp Dimmer Circuit utilizing an IC 555 Timer. We can also create the dimmer using the linear regulator IC. However, the issue with such dimmers is that they can only achieve maximum efficiency of 50%. However, PWM-based dimmers can reach above 90% efficiency.

Heat loss is reduced due to the high efficiency. As a result, the switching parts of PWM dimmers necessitate a smaller heat sink. The tiny heat sink minimizes the overall size and weight of the gadget. So, in this tutorial, we’ll build a 12V PWM light dimmer with a NE555 IC, two switching transistors, and a diode.

What others are reading now:

The 555 Timer-based circuit only applies to DC circuits with a limited voltage range. This circuit cannot be used with AC dimmers.

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If you are looking for AC lamp dimmers, consider reading about TRIAC, as they are commonly used in AC Dimmer Circuits. You may read more about 555 Timer-Based Projects on our website.

Materials used for this project

The following are the materials needed to complete this project. All of the components are simply available on Amazon.

Capacitor0.01uF Ceramic Disk2
555 Timer ICNE5551

Simple Lamp Dimmer Circuit

The PWM Lamp Dimmer Circuit Using an IC 555 Timer is shown below.

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Simple Lamp Dimmer Circuit using 555 Timer IC
Circuit Diagram of Simple Lamp Dimmer Circuit using 555 Timer IC

The NE555 timer is wired as an astable multivibrator in the circuit above and operates at a frequency of 2.8KHz. The timing components are the two 1K resistors in series with the 50K variable resistor and the 0.01uf capacitor.

The Potentiometer RV1 is used to modify the duty cycle of the IC’s output. The greater the duty cycle, the brighter the lamp, and the lower the duty cycle, the less illuminated the light.

During the charging cycle of the astable multivibrator, the 1N4007 diode bypasses the lower part of the variable resistor.

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The diode ensures consistency of the output frequency regardless of the duty cycle.

The Darlington driver stage for the 12V light is formed by transistors Q1 and Q2 (2N5551 and TIP41, respectively). The 1K resistor limits the base current of the 2N5551 transistor.

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Boateng Oduro is passionate about learning new technologies and working on them. He is a teacher and an engineer who loves to read, write, and teach. He's always curious about things and very determined to track the latest technologies and the trends for the future.

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