Flip-flops are semiconductor devices and specialised integrated circuits (ICs) designed for use in flip-flop circuits. These types of circuits are non-linear and have two stable states. Not only that, they are designed such that they allow processing of the output from one of the gates with the input signal. Flip-flops work on this mixed input signal, making sure that the outputs remain dependent on their previous states. Flip-flops are used extensively to store and transfer data in computers.
Types of flip-flops
Flip-flops differ depending on their specific logic functions. Based on these, flip-flops can be categorised into four main types:
Other than these, flip-flop devices are also available in varying pin count options, mounting styles, and industry standard packages.
The main function of flip-flops is to store information. When connected together, flip-flops are capable of storing data, representing the sequencer state, the counter value, or the ASCII character of the computer's memory. As such, these devices can be used in digital circuits and other applications, including storage registers, shift registers, counters, and frequency dividers.