Catalog Entry (2012-2013):

4630 Digital Communications Media(4) Topics related to the transport of bit streams from one geographical location to another over various physical media such as wire pairs, coaxial cable, optical fiber, and radio waves. Transmission characteristics, media interfacing, delay, distortion, noise, and error detection and correction techniques. Prereq: CEEN 3550 or 3610.(Cross-listed with CEEN 8636.)


Modern Digital and Analog Communication Systems, B. P. Lathi, 3rd edition, Oxford University Press 1998.
Laboratory Manual to Accompany Modern Electronic Communication, Mark E. Oliver, 6th edition, Prentice Hall, 1996.

Class/Laboratory Schedule:

Three university hours for lecture and three university hours for laboratory per week.

Course Outcomes:

The student who successfully completes this course will be able to:

  1. Understand the basic concepts and building blocks of a digital communication system (7,9h)
  2. Understand the basic notions of probability, random variables and random processes and its applications in communication system analysis (1,2,5)
  3. Understand the fundamental principles of transmission and reception of digital information in an additive white Gaussian noise channel (7,9h)
  4. Understand the fundamental principles of transmission and reception of digital information in a band-limited channel (7,9h)
  5. Understand the basic techniques for the performance analysis of digital communication systems (7,9h)
  6. Design optimum transmitter/receiver in a digital communication system. (1,2,5,9h)
  7. Analyze digital communication system in the presence of noise and calculate bit error rate. (2,5,9bfh)
  8. Perform digital modulation on a information signal such as PSK, DPSK, FSK, QAM and QPSK (8,9de)
  9. Calculate bit error rate of coherent and non-coherent demodulation of PSK, FSK and QAM. (2,5,9bfh)
  10. Use laboratory instruments to perform measurement of digital communication circuits (6,9de)
  11. Conduct measurements to determine the characteristics and performance of digital communication circuits (6,9de,13)
  12. Conduct project design and simulation of a digital communication system (3,4,6,8,9bdefgh)
  13. Participate and contribute to group and team effort in learning that includes class assignments, laboratory experiments, project development, and written reports (12,13).

Course Topics:

  1. Introduction to digital communications 1 week
  2. Probability and random processes 3 weeks
    • Continuous and discrete random variables; characteristic functions, central limit theorem
    • Time functions and stochastic ensembles; stationary and power spectral density; response of linear systems to random process
    • Gaussian process and noise; optimum linear systems
  3. Base-band transmission 4 weeks
    • Binary and M-ary signaling
    • Optimum pulse shaping and filtering
    • Error probability, eye pattern.
  4. Band-pass transmission 4 weeks
    • Signal representation, Gram-Schmidt orthonormalization
    • Optimal receiver, correlation and matched filter receivers
    • Amplitude, phase and frequency shift keying
    • Coherent and non-coherent detection
    • Power spectrum and error probability.
  5. Information theory 3 weeks
    • Information measure and entropy, source coding
    • Channel capacity; error correction codes

Laboratory Topics:

  1. Pulse-Amplitude Modulation and Time-Division-Multiplexing
  2. Pulse-Width Modulation and Detection
  3. Digital Communication Link using Pulse-Coded Modulation Techniques
  4. Digital Communication using Frequency-Shift Keying
  5. Simulation of Binary Digital Communications
  6. PN sequence generation and Autocorrelation
  7. Signal Constellation, Power Spectrum and Eye Diagram

The Reason this Course is in the Program:

The objective of this course is to introduce the fundamentals of digital communications systems to the students who are familiar with analog electronic and communication circuits and systems. Those subjects were taught in the 4th and 5th semester of the program, respectively. The emphasis of this course is on the modulation and detection of digital transmission in the presence of additive white Gaussian noise, as well as on the performance analysis techniques. The goal is to develop the student ability to have a conceptual understanding of various aspects of digital communications, as well as to analyze and design the basics of a digital communication system.

Prepared by:

Lim Nguyen - September 25, 2003