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In its most basic form, a thyristor is a solid-state power semiconductor device with four alternating layers of P-type and N-type semiconductor material. A thyristor acts as a bistable switch, conducting (i.e. turning-on) when its gate receives a current pulse. A thyristor continues to conduct as long as it is forward-biased (until the voltage across the device is reversed). Thyristors are synonymous with silicon controlled rectifiers (SCRs).

Richardson RFPD maintains a robust selection of Thyristors in four separate categories (see below) from Dynex, Mitsubishi, Powerex, and Semikron.

Applications for Thyristors include High-Voltage Converters, Bridge Circuits, Choppers, AC Motor Drives, DC Braking, Battery Chargers, Crowbars, Induction Heating, Uninterruptable Power Supplies (UPS), Large IGBT Front End Circuits, Lighting Control (professional grade dimmers for studios and theaters), Heating/Temperature Controls (for industrial ovens, chemical processes, etc.), Power Factor Correction (PFC) Circuits, Pulse Power, and Welding.

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