Optional learning units

The following optional courses are available for 2020/2021.

Semester 2
Option 1 
Option 2
Option 3
Optical Communications
RF Circuits and Subsystems
Wireless Networks and Protocols

Optical Communications

Lecturers: Henrique Salgado (Coordinator), Mário Lima, António Teixeira, Luís Pessoa


The course aims to provide the students with the fundamentals of optical communication systems, presenting scenarios nowadays. It covers the principles of optoelectronics and fibre optics operation and optical amplifiers, followed by fibre impairments, namely dispersion and nonlinearities, which are the dominant factors on high-speed transmission systems. Techniques to design high-efficiency systems approaching the Shannon limit using advanced modulation formats in coherent systems will also be addressed.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the principles of optical communications systems
  • Operation principles of the optical amplifier
  • Knowledge on aspects of the main fibre impairments and advanced high-speed transmission systems.


1. Optical communication systems fundamentals

1.1. Optical fibers

1.1.1. Geometric theory of light propagation in multimode fibers
1.1.2. Mode theory of light propagation in single-mode fibers
1.1.3. Attenuation mechanisms
1.1.4. Dispersion (intermodal, chromatic)
1.1.5. Fiber types (SMF, DSF, DCF)
1.1.6. Fiber limitations

1.2. Optical Sources

1.2.1. Operation basics
1.2.2. LEDs and laser diodes
1.2.3. Noise and chirp

1.3. Optical amplifiers

1.3.1. Different types of amplifiers (EDFA, Raman, SOA)
1.3.2. EDFA operation (gain and noise)
1.3.3. EDFA in WDM systems

1.4. Photodiodes and receivers

1.4.1. PIN and APD
1.4.2. Noise sources
1.4.3. Pre-amplified receivers
1.4.4. Direct and coherent detection

1.5. Passive optical networks
1.5.1. PON scenarios
1.5.2. Bandwodth x distance limitations

1.6. Nonlinear effects in fiber

1.6.1. SPM, XPM
1.6.2. Pulse propagation

1.7. Advanced modulation formats

1.7.1. Mach-Zehnder modulator
1.7.2. Formats (transmitter, receiver, spectral characteristics)
1.7.3. Coherent systems

RF Circuits and Subsystems

Lecturers: Armando Rocha, Vítor Grade Tavares, Cândido Duarte


This course is focused on RF electronic circuits and subsystems and is intended to complement the basic undergraduate knowledge on telecommunications electronics of PhD students, as RF systems are the basis of all wireless systems. These currently include all types of mobile communication systems, Bluetooth, Zig-bee and WiFi, and will be the basis for future solutions on 5G communications, especially Internet of Things, white space technologies and M2M.

Learning outcomes:

At the end of RFCS, students are expected to:

  • Analyse and characterize RF devices, circuits and systems using adequate techniques • Understand functional blocks of a transmitter or receiver chain
  • Understand circuit-level designs of practical RF-CMOS implementations
  • Be able to design, simulate and validate electronic RF circuits (hybrid and integrated)


Expected basic undergraduate knowledge on elecronics and wireless communications.


Module I

I.1. Transmission Line Theory

Distributed parameters and propagation constant of a transmission line
Voltage and current equations in a transmission line
Input impedance of a transmission line and transmission line transformers
Power transfer equations in a transmission line
Coaxial and bifilar transmission line
Microstrip and coplanar transmission lines
Smith Chart

I.2. RF impedance matching systems design

Distributed element matching networks
Lumped elements matching networks

I.3. RF passive components

Lumped RF inductor, capacitor and resistor models
Hybrids: quadrature hybrid and rat-race
Directional couplers
Filters and duplexers

I.4. Representation of two port networks

Y, Z, h and ABCD parameters
S parameters and signal flow graphs

I.5. Microwave transistor amplifier design

Power gain equations
Constant-gain circles for the unilateral case
Simultaneous conjugate match for the unilateral case
Unilateral figure of merit and constant-gain circles for the bilateral case
DC bias networks
Specification of a commercial signal amplifier

I.6. RF instrumentation basics

Signal generators
Spectrum analyzer
Vector network analyzer and calibration

Module II

II.1. Integrated Circuits for Wireless Communications

Overview of RF-IC Technology
MOSFET Device Physics and RF Operation
Passive Impedance Transformation
Integrated Passive Devices in CMOS Technologies

II.2. RF Transceiver Architectures

Transmitters: Heterodyne and Direct Conversion
Receivers: Heterodyne, Direct Conversion. Image Rejection and Low IF
Challenges in Modern Architectures

II.3. Power Amplifiers

Classical PA Classes and High-Efficiency PA Topologies
Polar Modulators, Outphasing Transmitters, and Doherty Amplifiers
Advances in RF-IC Linear Transmitters

II.4. Low-Noise Amplifiers

Noise in MOSFETs
Typical CMOS LNA Topologies and Variations, Gain and Band Switching
Current Developments in CMOS LNAs

II.5. Mixers

General Principles and Mixer Performance Metrics
Passive and Active Downconversion Mixers. Improved Topologies
Upconversion Mixer Circuits

II.6. Oscillators

Voltage-Controlled Oscillators
Phase Noise
Quadrature Oscillators

Wireless Networks and Protocols

Lecturers: Adriano Moreira (coordinator), Manuel Ricardo, Rui Aguiar


Wireless Networks and Protocols (WNP) is a course for students aimed at specializing in the mobile communications theme of MAP-Tele. The WNP course has two main objectives:
1. to provide the students with the competences required to understand current wireless networks and their main functions;
2. to provide students with the competences required to create future wireless networks and/or its associated functions. 
In order to meet these objectives a set of scientific topics were identified: a) wireless networking, b) mobility, c) authentication, d) Quality of Service (QoS), and e) network support for services.

Learning outcomes:

Students should be able to:

1. Describe the evolution path of the wireless and mobile communications systems;
2. Enumerate the most relevant wireless communications technologies and identify the corresponding standards and major players;
3. Explain how the current wireless network systems cohabit;
4. Describe the major technical capabilities and limitations of the current wireless communications systems;
5. Identify current trends in telecommunications systems integration, from networks to service support;
6. Describe the emerging paradigms in communications networks integration;
7. Explain the importance of authentication and access control mechanisms in integrated wireless networks;
8. Describe the most relevant models for the support of quality-of-service in wireless networks, and identify the challenges for their implementation;
9. Describe the concept of service oriented architectures and provide examples of solutions.


1. Introduction to Wireless Networks and Protocols: a) Overview; b) History; c) Standards and market issues; d) Evolution and trends.

2. Fundamentals of wireless communications: a) Transmission; b) Wireless data links and medium access control; c) Networking; d) Mobility concepts; e) Research issues.

3. Telecommunications systems: a) GSM; b) GPRS; c) UMTS; d) LTE; e) TETRA; f) Broadcast and satellite.

4. IEEE wireless data networks: a) WPAN; b) WLAN; c) WMAN.

5. Convergence and interoperability: a) Evolution of 3GPP networks; b) Wireless mesh networks; c) Research issues.

6. Quality of service: a) Characterization and models; b) Case studies: 3GPP-QoS, IEEE-QoS, IP-QoS; c) Research issues.

7. Support for services and applications: a) Web services components; b) Services and applications platforms; c) Research issues.

8. Authentication and access control: a) Fundamentals of Authentication and Access Control; b) Characterization and models; c) Case studies: 3GPP, 802.1x, 3GPP; d) Research issues.