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Introduction to Electronic

Communications System
Main purpose of an electronic
communications system is to transfer
information from one place to another.
Electronic communications can be
viewed as the transmission, reception
and processing of information between
two or more locations using electronic
circuit/device.
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It covers
Communication models
Communication transmission modes

Power measurement in electronics


communication
Electromagnetic frequency spectrum

Communication bandwidth

Information capacity

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1.1 Basic Communication Model
Basic communication models shows the communication
flows between two points.

Source sender of the information


Sink receiver that receive the information
Channel transmission path/medium of the
information between the source and sink
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1.1 Basic Communication Model
Communication system model

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Transmission channel physical link between
the communicating parties
Modulator transform the source signal so
that it is physically suitable for the
transmission channel
Transmitter introduce the modulated signal
into the channel (also act as amplifier)
Receiver Detect the signal on the channel
and amplify it (due to the attenuation)
Demodulator Get the source signal (original)
from the received signal and pass it to the
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1.2 Communication / Transmission Mode
Communication system can be designed for transmitting
information in one or both direction. Generally, the mode of
communication can be divided into three types :

Simplex System : the system capable of sending information in one


direction only where only the sender can send the information and only the
recipient can receive the information. (e.g. TV & radio broadcasting)

Half-duplex System : the system capable to carry information in both


direction, but only one direction is allowed at a time. The sender transmits to the
intended receiver, and then reverse their roles. (e.g. walkie-talkie, 2-way
intercom)

Full-duplex System : Information can be carried in both direction at the


same time. The 2 directions of information travel are independent of each other.
(e.g. ordinary/mobile phone systems, computer systems)

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Transmission Style

Simplex
A B TV, Radio, Pager etc

Half-Duplex
String Phone,
A B Intercomm
Handy Talky
Full-Duplex
A B Telephone
1.2 Communication Transmission/Mode
Half-duplex System vs Full-duplex System

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1.3 Power Measurement
(dB, dBm, Bel and dBW)
Magnitudes of communication signals span a
very wide range causing a drawbacks as
follow :
Extremely large scale (graph/drawing)
Hard calculation (too big vs too small numbers)
Prone to errors (e.g. 0.0001 vs 0.00001)
Hard to compare the signals

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1.3.1 Decibel (dB)
Used to measure the ratio between two
values value to be measured relative to a
reference value
In the electronic communication field, decibel
is normally used to define the power ratios
between 2 signals
- To express relative gain and lose of the
electronic device/circuit
- Describing relationship between signal and
noise
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In the common usage, it also used to express the
ratios of voltage and current
If two powers are expressed in the same units (e.g.
watt, miliwatt), their ratio is a dimensionless
quantity that can be expressed in decibel form as
follow
P 0ut
dB 10 log 10 (1)
Pin

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1.3.1 Decibel (dB)
WherePout : power level of output (watts)
Pin : power level of input (watts)

the dB value is for the power of Pout with


respect to the reference power Pin
the dB value shows the difference in dB
between power Pout and Pin

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1.3.1 Decibel (dB)
In the case to measure the power gain or loss of any
electronic circuit or device, equation (1) can be
written as follow
Pout
Ap ( dB ) 10 log 10
Pin (2)
where Ap(dB) : power gain (unit in dB) of Pout with respect to
Pin
Pout : output power level (watts)
Pin : input power level (watts)
Pout/Pin : absolute power gain (unitless)

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Positive (+) dB value indicates the output
power is greater than the input power, which
indicates power gain or amplification
Negative (-) dB value indicates the output
power is less that the input power which
indicates power loss or attenuation
If Pout = Pin, the absolute power gain is 1,
which means dB power gain is 0 (referred as
unity power gain)

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1.3.1 dB
Ex 1 : Convert the absolute power ratio of 200 to a
power gain in dB.

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1.3.1 dB
Ex 1 : Convert the absolute power ratio of 200 to a
power gain in dB.

Answer. 23.0102 dB

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1.3.1 dB
Ex 2 : Convert a power gain Ap = 30 dB to an
absolute power ratio.

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1.3.1 dB
Ex 2 : Convert a power gain Ap = 30 dB to an
absolute power ratio.

Answer. 1000

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1.3.1 dB
Ex 3 : Expressing power gain in term of voltage ratio
From
PV 2 (3)

Substituting (3) into (2),

Vout 2
i.e. dB 10 log 10 2
(3-1)
Vin

Vout
Voltage Gain Av ( dB) 20 log 10
Vin (3-2)

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1.3.2 dBm
A dBm is a unit of measurement used to
indicate the ratio of power level with respect
to a fixed reference level. With dBm, the
reference level is 1 mW (miliwatts).
dBm unit can be expressed as follow

P (4)
dBm 10 log 10
0.001

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1.3.2 dBm
Ex 4 : Convert a power level of 200 mW to
dBm

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1.3.2 dBm
Ex 4 : Convert a power level of 200 mW to
dBm

Answer. 23.0102 dBm

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1.3.2 dBm
Ex 5 : Convert a power level of 30 dBm to an
absolute power

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1.3.2 dBm
Ex 5 : Convert a power level of 30 dBm to an
absolute power

Answer. 30 dBm

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1.3.2 dBm

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1.3.3 Bel
A Bel is one-tenth of a decibel
Pout
Bel log 10 (5)
Pin

The Decibel unit was originated from the Bel unit, in honor of Alexander
Graham Bell.
Bel unit compressed absolute ratios of 0.00000001 to 100000000 to a
ridiculously low range of only 16 Bel (-8 Bel to + 8 Bel).
Difficult to relate Bel unit to true magnitudes of large ratios and impossible
to express small differences with any accuracy.
To overcome this, Bel was simply multiplied by 10, creating a decibel.

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The Decibel unit was originated from the Bel
unit, in honor of Alexander Graham Bell.
Bel unit compressed absolute ratios of
0.00000001 to 100000000 to a ridiculously
low range of only 16 Bel (-8 Bel to + 8 Bel).
Difficult to relate Bel unit to true magnitudes
of large ratios and impossible to express small
differences with any accuracy.
To overcome this, Bel was simply multiplied
by 10, creating a decibel.

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1.3.4 Power levels, Gains and Losses

When power levels are given in watts


and power gains are given as
absolute values, the output power is
determined by multiplying the input
power with the power gains.

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Ex 6 : Given a 3 stages system comprised of
two amplifiers and filter. The input power Pin =
0.1 mW. The absolute power gains are AP1 =
100, AP2 = 40 and AP3 = 0.25. Determine

a) the input power in dBm


b) the dB gain of each of the 3 stages
c) output power (Pout) in watts and dBm

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1.3.4 Power levels, Gains and Losses
Ex 7 : For a 3-stages system with an input
power Pin = -20 dBm and the power gains of
the 3-stages as AP1 = 13 dB, AP2 = 16 dB and
AP3 = -6 dB, determine the output power (Pout)
in dBm and watts.

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1.4 Electromagnetic Frequency Spectrum
Communicating the information between two or more location is done by
converting the original information into electromagnetic energy and then
transmitting it to the receiver where it is converted back to its original form
The electromagnetic energy is distributed throughout infinite range of
frequencies
The total electromagnetic frequency spectrum with the approximate
locations of various services is shown below.

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1.4 Electromagnetic Frequency Spectrum
The spectrum is divided into bands, with each band having a different
name and boundary.
The radio frequency band (30Hz ~300GHz) is divided into narrower band
as follow.

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1.4 Electromagnetic Frequency Spectrum
Wavelength : is the length that one cycle of electromagnetic wave
occupies in space. It is inversely proportional to the frequency of the
wave and directly proportional to the velocity of propagation.
Wavelength can be defined as follow,
c

f (6)
where = wavelength (m), c = velocity of light (3 x 108 m/s),
f = frequency (Hz)
Total electromagnetic wavelength spectrum is shown below.

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1.4 Electromagnetic Frequency Spectrum

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1.4 Electromagnetic Frequency Spectrum

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1.4 Electromagnetic Frequency Spectrum
Ex. 8 : Determine the wavelength in meters for the following frequencies:
1 kHz, 100 kHz and 10 MHz

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1.4 Electromagnetic Frequency Spectrum
Ex. 8 : Determine the wavelength in meters for the
following frequencies: 1 kHz, 100 kHz and 10 MHz
a. 300,000 m
b. 3,000 m
c. 30 m

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1.5 Bandwidth
Bandwidth of an information signal is the difference between
the highest and the lowest frequency contained in that signal.

Bandwidth of a communication channel is a difference


between the highest and the lowest frequency that the channel
will allow to pass through it.

Bandwidth of a communication channel must be equal or


greater than the bandwidth of the information.

Ex : voice signals contain frequencies between 300 Hz ~ 3000


Hz

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1.6 Information Capacity
Information capacity is a measure of how much information can be
propagated through a communication system.
It can be expressed in the function of bandwidth and transmission time.
It represents the number of independent symbols that can be carried
through a system in a given unit of time
Based on Hartleys Law,
IB t (7)

where I = information capacity (bits per second)


B = bandwidth (Hz)
t = transmission time (seconds)

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1.6 Information Capacity
In 1948, Claude E. Shannon published what is called as Shannon limit for
information capacity defined as follow
Based on this law, the information capacity of any communication channel
is related to its bandwidth and the signal-to-noise ratio.
The higher the signal-to-noise ratio, the better the performance and the
higher the information capacity is.
Mathematically, it is defined as,
S
I B log 21 (8)
N
or

S
I 3.32 B log 101
N (9)

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1.6 Information Capacity
where I = information capacity (bits per second)
B = bandwidth (Hz)
S/N = signal to noise power ratio (unitless)

Ex 9 : Fora standard telephone circuit with


a signal-to-noise ratio of 1000 (30 dB)
and a bandwidth of 2.7 kHz, determine
the Shannon limit for information
capacity.

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26. 9115 Kbps

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1.7 Noise Representation, types & source
Definition any undesirable electrical energy that falls within the passband of
the signal.
Effect of noise on the electrical signal :

2 general categories of noise :


Correlated noise noise that exists only when a signal is present.
Uncorrelated noise noise that presents all the time whether there is a signal or not

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1.7.1 Uncorrelated noise
2 general categories of uncorrelated noise :
1. External noise noise that generated outside the device or circuit.

Atmospheric noise
- naturally occurring electrical disturbances that originate within earths atmosphere such as
lightning.
- also known as static electricity.

Extraterrestrial noise
- consists of electrical signal that originate from outside earths atmosphere and therefore also
known as deep-space noise.
- 2 categories of extraterrestrial noise.
i solar noise noise that generated directly from the suns heat.
ii cosmic noise / black-body noise noise that is distributed throughout the galaxies.

Man-made noise
- noise that is produced by mankind.
- source : spark-producing mechanism (commutators in electrical motors, automobile ignition
systems, ac power generating/switching equipment, fluorescent lights).

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1.7.1 Uncorrelated noise
2 general categories of uncorrelated noise :
2. Internal noise noise that generated within the device or circuit.

Shot noise
- caused by the random arrival of carriers (holes and electrons) at the output element of an
electronic device.
- shot noise is randomly varying and is superimposed onto any signal present.

Transit-time noise
- irregular, random variation due to any modification to a stream of carriers as they pass from
the input to the output of a device.
- this noise become noticeable when the time delay takes for a carrier to propagate through a
device is excessive.

thermal / random noise


- noise that is produced by mankind.
- source : spark-producing mechanism (commutators in electrical motors, automobile ignition
systems, ac power generating/switching equipment, fluorescent lights).

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1.7.1 Uncorrelated noise
2 general categories of uncorrelated noise :
2. Internal noise noise that generated within the device or circuit.

Thermal / random noise


- associated with the rapid and random movement of electrons within a conductor due to
thermal agitation.
- also known as Brownian noise, Johnson noise and white noise.
- uniformly distributed across the entire electromagnetic spectrum.
- a form of additive noise, meaning that it cannot be eliminated, and it increase in intensity
with the number of devices and with circuit length.
- the most significant of all noise sources
- thermal noise power can be defined as follow :

N KTB (6.1)

where N : noise power (watts)


B : bandwidth (Hertz)
T : absolute temperature (kelvin) .......... T = C + 273

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1.7.1 Uncorrelated noise
Thermal / random noise
- equivalent circuit for a thermal noise source when the internal resistance of the source R 1 is
in series with the rms noise voltage VN

- for a worst case and maximum transfer of noise power, the load resistance R is made equal
to the internal resistance. Thus the noise power developed across the load resistor :

N KTB
VN / 2
2

VN 2
(6.2)
R 4R
thus rms noise voltage can be define as

VN 4RKTB
(6.3)

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1.7.2 Correlated noise
a form of internal noise that is correlated to the signal and cannot be present in a
circuit unless there is a signal.
produced by a nonlinear amplification resulting in nonlinear distortion.
there are 2 types of nonlinear distortion that create unwanted frequencies that
interfere with the signal and degrade the performance :
1. Harmonic distortion

occurs when unwanted harmonics of a signal are produced through nonlinear


amplification.
harmonics are integer multiples of the original signal. The original signal is the
first harmonic (fundamental harmonic), a frequency two times the fundamental
frequency is the second harmonic, three times is the third harmonic and so on.
Distortion measurements :

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1.7.2 Correlated noise
1. Harmonic distortion
distortion measurements :
- Nth harmonic distortion = ratio of the rms amplitude of Nth harmonic to the rms amplitude
of the fundamental.
- Total Harmonic Distortion (THD)

vhigher
%THD 100 (6.4)
vfundamental
where

vhigher v2 2 v33 v4 4 .... vn 2 all in rms value.

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1.7.2 Correlated noise
2. Intermodulation distortion
intermodulation distortion is the generation of unwanted sum and difference
frequencies produced when two or more signals mix in a nonlinear device (cross
products).
unwanted !

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1.7.3 Other type of noise
1. Impulse noise
characterized by high amplitude peaks of short duration (sudden burst of irregularly
shaped pulses) in the total noise spectrum.
common source of impulse noise : transient produced from electromechanical
switches (relays and solenoids), electric motors, appliances, electric lights, power
lines, poor-quality solder joints and lightning.

2. Interference
electrical interference occurs when information signals from one source produces
frequencies that fall outside their allocated bandwidth and interfere with information
signal from another source.
most occurs in the radio frequency spectrum.

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1.8 Noise Parameters
1.8.1 Signal-to-noise Power Ratio
signal-to-noise power ratio (S/N) is the ratio of the signal power level to the
noise power level and can be expressed as

S Ps
(6.5)
in logarithmic function
N Pn
S Ps
(dB) 10 log (6.6)
N Pn
in terms of voltages and resistance
S Vs 2 / Rin
(dB) 10 log 2 (6.7)
N Vn / Rout
in the case Rin = Rout, (6.7) can be reduced to
S Vs
(dB) 20 log (6.8)
N Vn
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1.8.2 Noise Factor and Noise Figure
Noise factor is the ratio of input signal-to-noise ratio to output signal-to-noise
ratio
( S / N )in
F (6.9)
( S / N )out
Noise figure is the noise factor stated in dB and is a parameter to indicate the
quality of a receiver

( S / N )in
NF 10 log F 10 log (6.10)
( S / N )out
Noise Figure in Ideal and Non-ideal Amplifiers
- an electronic circuit amplifies signal and noise within its passband equally well
- in the case of ideal/noiseless amplifier, the input signal and the noise are
amplified equally.
- meaning that, signal-to-noise ratio at input = signal-to-noise ratio at output

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1.8.2 Noise Factor and Noise Figure
Noise Figure in Ideal and Non-ideal Amplifiers (continue)
- in reality, amplifiers are not ideal, adds internally generated noise to the
waveform, reducing the overall signal-to-noise ratio.

- in figure (a), the input and output S/N ratios are equal.
- in figure (b), the circuits add internally generated noise Nd to the waveform,
causing the output signal-to-noise ratio to be less than the input signal-to-noise
ratio.

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1.8.2 Noise Factor and Noise Figure
Noise Figure in Ideal and Non-ideal Amplifiers (continue)
- in figure (b), the circuits add internally generated noise Nd to the waveform,
causing the output signal-to-noise ratio to be less than the input signal-to-noise
ratio.

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1.8.2 Noise Factor and Noise Figure
Noise Figure in Cascaded Amplifier
- when two or more amplifiers are cascaded as shown in the following figure,
the total noise factor is the accumulation of the individual noise factors.
- Friss formula is used to calculate the total noise factor of several cascade
amplifiers
F 2 1 F 3 1 FN 1
FT F 1 ... (6.11)
A1 A1 A2 A1 A2... AN

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1.8.2 Noise Factor and Noise Figure
Noise Figure in Cascaded Amplifier (continue)
- the Total Noise Figure
NFT 10 log FT (6.12)

When using Friss formula, the noise figures must


be converted to noise factors !!!

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1.9 Examples
Ex 1 : Convert the following temperatures to Kelvin :
100 C, 0 C and -10 C.

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1.9 Examples
Ex 1 : Convert the following temperatures to Kelvin :
100 C, 0 C and -10 C.

373.15 K
273.15 K
263.15 K

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1.9 Examples
Ex 2 : For and electronic device operating at a
temperature of 17 C, with a bandwidth of 10 kHz,
determine
a. thermal noise power in watts and dBm.
b. rms noise voltage for a 100 load resistance.

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1.9 Examples

Ex 3 : For an amplifier with an


output signal power of 10 W and
output noise power of 0.01 W,
determine the signal-to-noise power
ratio.

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1.9 Examples

Ex 4 : For an amplifier with an


output signal voltage of 4V, an
output noise voltage 0.005 V and an
input and output resistance of 50 ,
determine the signal-to-noise power
ratio.

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1.9 Examples
Ex 5 : For a non-ideal amplifier with a following parameters, determine
a. input S/N ratio (dB)
b. output S/N ratio (dB)
c. noise factor and noise figure

Input signal power = 2 x 10-10 W


Input noise power = 2 x 10-18 W
Power gain = 1000000
Internal noise Nd = 6 x 10-12 W

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1.9 Examples
Ex 6 : For 3 cascaded amplifier stages, each with a noise figures of 3 dB and
power gain of 10dB, determine the total noise figure.

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