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Concept# Inverter (logic gate)

Summary

In digital logic, an inverter or NOT gate is a logic gate which implements logical negation. It outputs a bit opposite of the bit that is put into it. The bits are typically implemented as two differing voltage levels.
The NOT gate outputs a zero when given a one, and a one when given a zero. Hence, it inverts its inputs. Colloquially, this inversion of bits is called "flipping" bits. As with all binary logic gates, other pairs of symbols such as true and false, or high and low may be used in lieu of one and zero.
It is equivalent to the logical negation operator (¬) in mathematical logic. Because it has only one input, it is a unary operation and has the simplest type of truth table. It is also called the complement gate because it produces the ones' complement of a binary number, swapping 0s and 1s.
The NOT gate is one of three basic logic gates from which any Boolean circuit may be built up. Together with the AND gate and the OR gate, any function in binary mathematics may be implemented. All other logic gates may be made from these three.
The terms "programmable inverter" or "controlled inverter" do not refer to this gate; instead, these terms refer to the XOR gate because it can conditionally function like a NOT gate.
The traditional symbol for an inverter circuit is a triangle touching a small circle or "bubble". Input and output lines are attached to the symbol; the bubble is typically attached to the output line. To symbolize active-low input, sometimes the bubble is instead placed on the input line. Sometimes only the circle portion of the symbol is used, and it is attached to the input or output of another gate; the symbols for NAND and NOR are formed in this way.
A bar or overline ( ̅ ) above a variable can denote negation (or inversion or complement) performed by a NOT gate. A slash (/) before the variable is also used.
An inverter circuit outputs a voltage representing the opposite logic-level to its input. Its main function is to invert the input signal applied. If the applied input is low then the output becomes high and vice versa.

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