bistable circuit

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bistable circuit

[¦bī¦stā·bəl ‚sar·kət]
A circuit with two stable states such that the transition between the states cannot be accomplished by self-triggering.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


Pronounced "bye-stable." With regard to electronics, it refers to technologies that maintain their binary state without power, although they require power to change it. For example, non-volatile storage, such as flash memory, maintains its 0 or 1 state without power. A flip-flop is a bistable circuit, and E Ink and cholesteric LCDs are bistable display technologies. See non-volatile memory, future memory chips, flip-flop, E Ink and cholesteric LCD.


An electronic circuit that maintains its 0 or 1 state and is used in static memories and hardware registers. By the mid-20th century, the flip-flop was a breakthrough in circuit logic, which allowed data to be stored. The first flip-flops, known as "trigger circuits," were constructed with two transistors. Subsequent designs use two NOR or NAND logic gates.
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