Double Degree in International Computer Engineering and Management of Business and Technology

Radio Frequency Technologies

The aim of the course is to give the student an overview of the radio communication systems. In the first part, the main parts of an emitter and a receiver (i.e. amplifiers, mixers, oscillators, PLL, antenna, etc.) are analyzed, as well as the performance of these devices in terms of noise and distortion. In the second part, the wave propagation and the fixed land radiofrequency calculus are studied. In addition to theory, the course has also two practices, radio hardware design and coverage design.
Type Subject

Titular Professors

Previous Knowledge

Basic notions of electronics, circuits theory and transmission systems.


The knowledge to be acquired by the students is:
1. Understanding of the different parts of a radio emitter and receiver.
2. Understanding of the specification of radio integrated circuits.
3. Radio-link design.
The students are also supposed to develop the skills listed below:
4. Capacity for analysis of radio circuits.
5. Capacity for work organization and planning.
6. Oral and written communication in the language used by the students in the different proves presented to the professor.
7. Problem solving capacity.
8. Computing skills for specialized software.
9. Ability in assembly of radio circuits.
10. Teamwork.
11. Teamwork in an e-learning context.
12. Report writing.
13. Capacity of applying radio technologies theory into practice.
14. Capacity of generating new ideas.
15. Handling English text books.


The themes studied in the radio technology subject are the following:

1 Introduction to radio transceivers
1.1 Basic concepts
1.2 Receivers
1.3 Emitters
2 Noise fundamentals
2.1 Definition and types of noise
2.2 Noise factor and noise equivalent temperature
3 Distortion
3.1 Basic concepts. Square law distortion
3.2 Cubic law distortion
3.3 The interception point and the undesired response rejection
4. Impedance matching and filters
4.1 Radiofrequency filters
4.2 Impedance matching
5 RF amplifiers
5.1 Small signal amplifiers
5.2 CAG circuits
5.3 Power amplifiers
6 Mixers
6.1 Introduction
6.2 Diode mixers
6.3 Bipolar transistor mixers
6.4 FET transistor mixers
7 Oscillators
7.1 Principle of oscillation
7.2 Types of oscillators
7.3 Stability
7.4 Crystal oscillators
8 The Phase Locked Loop (PLL)
8.1 Fundamentals of PLL
8.2 The linear approximation of the PLL
8.3 The second order PLL
8.4 PLL-with-noise analysis
8.5 Applications of the PLL
9. Radioelectric waves propagation in the atmosphere
9.1 Ray theory
9.2 Reflection and diffraction
9.3 Troposphere and ionosphere influence
9.4statistic and empiric propagation models
10 Fixed terrestrial radiolink
10.1 Structure of a radiolink
10.2 Calculus procedure for a radiolink
10.3 Fadings
10.4 Quality
10.5 Diversity
10.6 Broadcast systems
11 Satellite communication systems
11.1 Structure of a satellite communication system
11.2 Power link budget

1.- Hardware design of a commercial FM radio receiver system


This subject is taught in the traditional format. The professor teaches the theoretical concepts through magisterial classes along the course. In these classes, the teacher also solves exercises where the concepts are directly applied into practice.
A complete collection of solved problems and exams is available for students in order to help them to understand better the theoretical knowledge and the problem solution. They also have notes and slides that help them to follow the classes. Students are encouraged to ask questions though the forums and email.

The students participate in a continuous e valuation process which consist in solving some small proves and carrying out some works that allow the students to consolidate the knowledge gradually.

The practice is done in groups of 3 people. There is a very comprehensive guide with all the steps and the answers to the most frequently asked questions. The assistant teacher can be contacted via forums and email to answer questions or to hand in the practice. When the students finish the practice a brief report has to be delivered with some system measurements.


In order to evaluate if the student has achieved the adequate level of the proposed objectives, the subject has different methods to evaluate the student:

A. Exams.
There are three main on-campus exams along the course for all the students.

B. Oral exams.
At the end of each practice an oral exam is done.

J. Classroom participation.
The professor has an observation checklist where he/she writes some behavior and attitude of the pupils in the classrooms.

K. Laboratory reports.
In order to assess each report the professor asks some questions in order to evaluate the real participation of each student.

G. Computer work.
The second practice is about radiolinks calculus and has to be accomplished with a computer. In the on-campus format, the group must include the simulation results in the report. The professor will ask some questions about them and will evaluate individually the concepts that each student has acquired during the practice.

This is a half-yearly subject. The final grade is calculated with a 70% of the theory final mark and a 30% of the continuous evaluation grade. The practice grade may increase the final grade between 0 and 1 point.

Evaluation Criteria

Objective 1: Understanding of the basic general concepts about the different parts of a radio emitter and receiver. The student must demonstrate he/she has acquired the knowledge about the concepts of the course. [A, B]

Objective 2: Capacity for analysis of radio circuits. The student must be capable of analyze the problems, and of demonstrate capacity of synthesis on the generation of solutions. [A, B]

Objective 3: Oral and written communication in the language used by the students in the different proves presented to the professor. The student must present his/her exams without orthographic mistakes and good style and order. [A, K]

Objective 4: Problem solving. The student must give good solutions to the proposed problems. [A]

Objective 5: Capacity to work in teams. The student has to be able to work with his/her classmates and propose solutions to the presented problems [B, J]

Objective 6: Capacity of applying radio technologies theory into practice. The student must identify which tools of radio technologies should be applied in order to solve real problems. [A, B]

Basic Bibliography

- J.L. Pijoan, `Guia d´estudi de Tecnologies de Radiocomunicacions´, Enginyeria i Arquitectura La Salle, 2003.
- J.L. Pijoan, `Col-lecció de problemes´, Enginyeria i Arquitectura La Salle, 2011.
- J.L. Pijoan, `Apunts de Tecnologies de Radiocomunicacions´, Enginyeria i Arquitectura La Salle, 2005.
- Manuel Sierra et al., Electrónica de Comunicaciones, Prentice Hall, 2003.
- J.M. Hernando Rábanos, Transmisión por radio, 6ª ed, Centro Estudios Ramon Areces, 2008.
- Paul H. Young, Electronic Communication Techniques, Prentice-Hall, 1999.
- Herbert L. Krauss et alt., Solid State Radio Engineering, Wiley, John & Sons, May 2000
- J. Smith, Modern Communication Circuits, McGraw Hill.
- Angel Cardama et alt., Antenes, Edicions UPC, 1994.
- Bernard Sklar, Electronic Communication Techniques, Prentice-Hall, 2001
- Ronald E. Best, Phase-Locked Loops. Design, Simulation and Applications, McGraw-Hill, 1999.

Additional Material

- Wayne Tomasi, Advanced Electronic Communication Systems, Prentice-Hall, 1998.
- H. Meyr, G. Ascheid, Synchronization in Digital communications, Vol 1, John Wiley & Sons, 1990.
- D.C. Green, Radio Systems for Technicians, 1995.
- Gary. M. Miller, Modern Electronic Communication, Prentice-Hall, 1999.
- John G. Proakis, Masoud Salehi, Communication Systems Engineering, Prentice-Hall, 1994.
- Roy Blake, Basic Electronic Communication, West Publishing Company, 1993.
- Miquel Ferrer, Disseny de radioenllaços digitals, TFC Enginyeria La Salle, Juny 2001. Enginyeria i Arquitectura La Salle.