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Experiment 2 - The Bistable Multivibrator

Consider the circuit diagram containing two NOR gates. You realize it has two outputs Q and Q', which can take two states...

Circuit diagram bistable multivibrator.

Q Q'
1 0


Possible states of Q and Q'.

A bistable multivibrator switches back and forth between the two states (hence the part bi-). Has the multivibrator found a result, it remains stable. Only by using the inputs R and S you switch the multivibrator. This behaviour applies to all latches and flip-flops.

Circuit bistable multivibrator. (Enlarge)

With the circuit shown, it becomes more evident how it works...

When you connect the battery, either Q or Q' lights up. This is determined by chance.

After that you can switch between the two results by using R and S. Try this out to understand its behaviour.

This is already the first latch you built.