serial adder A binary adder that is capable of forming sum and carry outputs for addend and augend words of greater than one bit in length. The individual bits of the addend and augend, starting with the least significant bit, are presented in sequence, together with a carry, to the adder, which then forms sum and carry outputs. The carry must then be stored so that it can be used with the next most significant pair of input bits. A serial adder affords a saving in component count when compared with a parallel adder, but is inevitably slower.
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