operational amplifiers will usually state the open-loop (no feedback) gain for d.c. (or 0 hertz). At higher frequencies, the gain is much lower. In fact, for an operational amplifier, the gain decreases quite rapidly as frequency increases. ">
As with most amplifiers, the gain of an operational amplifier varies with frequency. The specification sheets for operational amplifiers will usually state the open-loop (no feedback) gain for d.c. (or 0 hertz). At higher frequencies, the gain is much lower. In fact, for an operational amplifier, the gain decreases quite rapidly as frequency increases.
Figure 3-17 shows the open-loop (no feedback) frequency-response curve for a typical operational amplifier. As you should remember, bandwidth is measured to the half-power points of a frequency-response curve. The frequency-response curve shows that the bandwidth is only 10 hertz with this configuration. The UNITY GAIN POINT, where the signal out will have the same amplitude as the signal in (the point at which the gain of the amplifier is 1), is 1 megahertz for the amplifier. As you can see, the Frequency response of this amplifier drops off quite rapidly.
Figure 3-17. - Open-loop frequency-response curve.
Figure 3-17 is the open-loop frequency-response curve. You have been told that most operational amplifiers are used in a closed-loop configuration. When you look at the frequency-response curve for a closed-loop configuration, one of the most interesting and important aspects of the operational amplifier becomes apparent: The use of degenerative feedback increases the bandwidth of an operational amplifier circuit.
This phenomenon is another example of the difference between the operational amplifier itself and the operational-amplifier circuit (which includes the components in addition to the operational amplifier). You should also be able to see that the external resistors not only affect the gain of the circuit, but the bandwidth as well.
You might wonder exactly how the gain and bandwidth of a closed-loop, operational-amplifier circuit are related. Figure 3-18 should help to show you the relationship. The frequency-response curve shown in figure 3-18 is for a circuit in which degenerative feedback has been used to decrease the circuit gain to 100 (from 100,000 for the operational amplifier). Notice that the half-power point of this curve is just slightly above 10 kilohertz.
Figure 3-18. - Closed-loop frequency-response curve for gain of 100.
Now look at figure 3-19. In this case, more feedback has been used to decrease the gain of the circuit to 10. Now the bandwidth of the circuit is extended to about 100 kilohertz.
Figure 3-19. - Closed-loop frequency-response curve for gain of 10.
The relationship between circuit gain and bandwidth in an operational-amplifier circuit can be expressed by the GAIN-BANDWIDTH PRODUCT (GAIN X BANDWIDTH = UNITY GAIN POINT). In other words, for operational-amplifier circuits, the gain times the bandwidth for one configuration of an operational amplifier will equal the gain times the bandwidth for any other configuration of the same operational amplifier. In other words, when the gain of an operational-amplifier circuit is changed (by changing the value of feedback or input resistors), the bandwidth also changes. But the gain times the bandwidth of the first configuration will equal the gain times the bandwidth of the second configuration. The following example should help you to understand this concept.
The frequency-response curves shown in figures 3-17, 3-18, and 3-19 have a gain-bandwidth product of 1,000,000. In figure 3-17, the gain is 100,000 and the bandwidth is 10 hertz. The gain-bandwidth product is 100,000 times 10 (Hz), or 1,000,000. In figure 3-18, the gain has been reduced to 100 and the bandwidth increases to 10 kilohertz. The gain-bandwidth product is 100 times 10,000 (Hz) which is also equal to 1,000,000. In figure 3-19 the gain has been reduced to 10 and the bandwidth is 100 kilohertz. The gain-bandwidth product is 10 times 100,000 (Hz), which is 1,000,000. If the gain were reduced to 1, the bandwidth would be 1 megahertz (which is shown on the frequency-response curve as the unity-gain point) and the gain-bandwidth product would still be 1,000,000.
Q.19 What does the term "closed-loop" mean in the closed-loop configuration
of an operational amplifier? In answering Q20, Q21, and Q23, select the correct response
from the choices given in the parentheses.
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