Monostable Multivibrators

Monostable multivibrators, also known as one-shot multivibrators, are a type of electronic circuit that can be used as a timer. They have one stable and one unstable state. The unstable state is caused by a trigger pulse. This state is transient, so the circuit always returns to stability after a fixed time has elapsed. 

Generally, monostable multivibrator circuits are composed of two transistors, coupled with one resistor-capacitor network and one resistor network. These networks are what determines the length of time before the circuit returns to its stable state, after being triggered. 

What are monostable multivibrators used for?

Monostable multivibrators are used to produce a specific timed delay within a circuit. Therefore, they can broadly be used as timers or as pulse detectors in electronic equipment. 

Types of monostable multivibrators

There are two types of monostable multivibrators:

  • Retriggerable monostable multivibrators will remain in the unstable state with repeated application of the trigger pulse.
  • Non-retriggerable monostable multivibrators are unaffected by further trigger pulses, and will remain in the unstable state only for the predetermined period of time. 

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Description Price Logic Family Logic Function Number of Elements per Chip Maximum High Level Output Current Maximum Low Level Output Current Minimum Pulse Width Maximum Propagation Delay Time @ Maximum CL Maximum Quiescent Current Mounting Type Package Type Pin Count Dimensions Height Length
RS Stock No. 151-3398
Mfr. Part No.74HC123PW,118
Each (In a Pack of 50)
HC Monostable Multivibrator 2 -4mA 4mA 26 ns 385 ns @ 15 pF - Surface Mount TSSOP16 16 5.1 x 4.5 x 0.95mm 0.95mm 5.1mm
RS Stock No. 162-6980
Mfr. Part No.CD74HCT423M96
Each (On a Reel of 2500)
HCT Monostable Multivibrator 2 -4mA 4mA 20 ns 68 ns @ 4.5 V 0.008mA Surface Mount SOIC 16 9.9 x 3.91 x 1.58mm 1.58mm 9.9mm
RS Stock No. 540-0427
Mfr. Part No.TC74HC4538AP(F)
Each (In a Pack of 5)
HC Monostable Multivibrator 2 -5.2mA 5.2mA 13 ns 250 ns @ 2 V 0.004mA Through Hole PDIP 16 19.25 x 6.4 x 3.5mm 3.5mm 19.25mm
RS Stock No. 162-6864
Mfr. Part No.SN74LVC1G123DCTT
Each (On a Reel of 250)
LVC Monostable Multivibrator 1 -32mA 32mA 2.5 ns 18.6 ns @ 1.8 V 0.02mA Surface Mount SSOP 8 2.95 x 2.8 x 1.29mm 1.29mm 2.95mm