Stable emitter bias requires a low voltage base bias supply, Figure below. The alternative to a base supply V_{BB} is a voltage divider based on the collector supply V_{CC}.

The design technique is to first work out an emitter-bias design, Then convert it to the voltage divider bias configuration by using Thevenin’s Theorem. [TK1] The steps are shown graphically in Figure below. Draw the voltage divider without assigning values. Break the divider loose from the base. (The base of the transistor is the load.) Apply Thevenin’s Theorem to yield a single Thevenin equivalent resistance Rth and voltage source Vth.

The Thevenin equivalent resistance is the resistance from load point (arrow) with the battery (V_{CC}) reduced to 0 (ground). In other words, R1||R2.The Thevenin equivalent voltage is the open circuit voltage (load removed). This calculation is by the voltage divider ratio method. R1 is obtained by eliminating R2 from the pair of equations for Rth and Vth. The equation of R1 is in terms of known quantities Rth, Vth, Vcc. Note that Rth is R_{B} , the bias resistor from the emitter-bias design. The equation for R2 is in terms of R1 and Rth.

Convert this previous emitter-bias example to voltage divider bias.

These values were previously selected or calculated for an emitter-bias example

Substituting V_{CC} , V_{BB} , R_{B} yields R1 and R2 for the voltage divider bias configuration.

R1 is a standard value of 220K. The closest standard value for R2 corresponding to 38.8k is 39k. This does not change I_{E} enough for us to calculate it.

**Problem:** Calculate the bias resistors for the cascode amplifier in Figure below. V_{B2} is the bias voltage for the common emitter stage. V_{B1} is a fairly high voltage at 11.5 because we want the common-base stage to hold the emitter at 11.5-0.7=10.8V, about 11V. (It will be 10V after accounting for the voltage drop across R_{B1} .) That is, the common-base stage is the load, substitute for a resistor, for the common-emitter stage’s collector. We desire a 1mA emitter current.

**Problem:** Convert the base bias resistors for the cascode amplifier to voltage divider bias resistors driven by the V_{CC} of 20V.

The final circuit diagram is shown in the “Practical Analog Circuits”

Article extracted from Tony Kuphaldt’s Lesson in Electric circuits Volume III Semiconductors under the terms and conditions of Design Science License.