Monday, November 29, 2010

Electret microphone

An electret microphone is a type of condenser microphone, which eliminates the need for a polarizing power supply by using a permanently-charged material.

An electret is a stable dielectric material with a permanently-embedded static electric charge (which, due to the high resistance and chemical stability of the material, will not decay for hundreds of years). The name comes from electrostatic and magnet; drawing analogy to the formation of a magnet by alignment of magnetic domains in a piece of iron. Electrets are commonly made by first melting a suitable dielectric material such as a plastic or wax that contains polar molecules, and then allowing it to re-solidify in a powerful electrostatic field. The polar molecules of the dielectric align themselves to the direction of the electrostatic field, producing a permanent electrostatic "bias". Modern electret microphones use PTFE plastic, either in film or solute form, to form the electret.
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