Letter | Published:

An Amplifier based on the Hall Effect

Naturevolume 175page1004 (1955) | Download Citation

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Abstract

THE achievement of a Hall effect amplifier by Ross and Thompson, as recorded in Nature of March 19, p. 518, is quite remarkable, even taking into consideration the very high carrier mobility obtainable with indium antimonide. Calculation shows that a power gain is only possible if every effort is made to get the required magnetic field with the minimum power input, and this clearly entails the use of a high permeability core with a very thin crystal in a correspondingly small air-gap. The power gain is derived from the input of current to the crystal, and theoretically there appears to be no limit to the amplification obtainable if it were possible to raise the strength of the magnetic field indefinitely. In practice, saturation must occur. By the same argument an input signal applied to the current terminals of the crystal when immersed in a steady magnetic field could not lead to amplification. There is then no independent source of power input, and in this case the usual expression for the Hall output cannot therefore remain valid with large signals. The amplifier of Ross and Thompson seems to be limited to low-frequency applications unless a semi-conductor of still higher carrier mobility becomes available.

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  1. University College, London, W.C.1.

    • H. M. BARLOW

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https://doi.org/10.1038/1751004c0

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