Regular courses

Advanced Control Theory - 4 credits

This course describes basic concepts and techniques for the analysis and design of a number of advanced model based controllers: amongst others robust controllers (H-infinity), internal model controllers, and feedforward controllers. To limit the complexity of the maths, the course is limited to the simplest class of systems: linear single input single output systems. Moreover, the course does not put the emphasis on maths but on the hands on experience: design, implementation, and critical evaluation of the advanced controllers. Therefore the course also provides practical insight that is very useful to design and implement the controllers.

Advanced Measurement and Identification - 4 credits

Engineers and scientists build models to understand, describe, predict and control the behaviour of the environment. In order to create these models it is necessary to combine the mathematical models with (noisy) measurements.  

In this advanced course, we will explore the consequences of having systems which do not satisfy the basic assumptions made when making frequency response function measurements. That is, we will learn how to deal with nonlinearities and time variations. 

Also, an introduction is given to the measurement of very high frequency signals and systems, and to the use of recursive identification techniques. In addition to a sound theoretical basis, we will also provide the students with hand on experiences in the labs.

Applied Electricity - 7 credits

3 major goals are to be attained:

  1. Getting insight in the use of mathematical tools to describe the most important experimental classical laws. One starts from the 4 equations of Maxwell. It is demonstrated that when including the law of Lorentz, which expresses the interaction between electrical sources and mechanical forces, any electrical problem can be solved. To achieve this task an introduction on Newtonian potentials is given. Using the theory of Helmholtz, it is shown that the approach of potentials yields an adequate and concise method to tackle electrical problems. This potential theory is also of use in other physical domains then electricity, such as mechanics and hydraulics, and, therefore, this theory is kept as fundamental as possible. The mechanism of conduction in conductors is studied using Ohm's law in local and global form. The resistance is studied as well as the current and voltage distributions in a conductor (calculus methods of Hopkinson). Attention is always drawn on the methods to predict the responses and influences when an electrical source (in scalar or vector form) is applied to a physical system. A mathematical model describing a battery is studied. The same approach to model the sources is also treated for magnetic and dielectric media, whereby an energetic balance is deducted.
  2. Introduction to network analysis and theory.
  3. Introduction to measurement techniques, including an illustration of the measurment of electrical quantities. Labs are organized for this part of the course

Applied Statistics - 3 credits

The theory and exercises deal with the following topics

  • Introduction
  • Dealing with probabilities: why do you need a course on statistics
  • Stochastic variables: characterization; physical interpretation
  • Probability density functions: description; physical interpretation; relations
  • Calculation of uncertainty bounds
  • Estimation of parameters
  • Hypothesis testing
  • Box plot: description, basic idea, applications

CAE-tools for the Design of Analog Electronic Circuits - 4 credits

Analysis and design of analog electronic circuits is done using computer aided engineering (CAE) tools. The methods used comprise dc analysis, ac analysis, transient analysis, harmonic balance analysis, shooting method, large-signal / small signal analysis,… It is evident that every tool is optimized to analyze a specific type of circuit or analysis. Take for example the transient simulation which is available in SPICE. This transient simulator is not suited for analyzing nonlinear microwave circuits or for the noise analysis in mixers. To solve this problem, simulation techniques such as harmonic balance were developed. Harmonic balance assumes that all signal are either periodic of quasi-periodic. This makes harmonic balance unsuited for non-quasi-periodic signals, but makes the technique superior for the analysis of nonlinear microwave circuit and the noise analysis of mixer.
The aim of the course is to teach the future engineer the pros and contras of the different available simulation tools. This way, he/she should be able to judge which CAE-tool is the most appropriate for solving his/her design or analysis problem. Besides the choice of the analysis tool, there is also the problem of setting the simulation parameters correctly. This requires some background in the actual implementation of the simulations techniques. Hence, a theoretical background of the different simulation techniques must be given in the course. In addition to the theoretical aspect, it is important to have practical experience with the simulation tools. This will lead to a future engineer which does not lose time by simulating with a sub-optimal simulation tool.

Capita selecta Telecom - 3 credits

The content changes year by year since the selected subjects in telecommunication are chosen in function of the industrial expectations and realisations. Subjects treated in the recent years are e.g.: xDSL and ADSL and VDSL2 in particular, GSM (GPRS) networks, Wi-Fi and meshed networks, RFID, UMTS, WiMAX, SACD coding versus Dolby or DTS, GNSS, Tetra, IP-TV, UWB...

Electromagnetism - 6 credits

Starting from the very general Maxwell equations, we end up with the differential equations that govern the behaviour of the electrical field in free space. This simple differential equation is subsequently solved using simple mathematical functions in different geometries and field configurations.

These use-cases contain both real engineering problems and fair approximations of more complex situations. This includes but is not limited to the propagation of electromagnetic waves in free space, or in a guiding structure. Examples used in the course are the coaxial cable, the rectangular metal waveguide and the flat dielectric waveguides.

The dissipative behaviour of the electrical field results in an in-depth analysis of the Skin-effect in plane and cylindrical conductors.

A lot of time and effort is spent to cover the theory and the practical applications of the transmission lines. A whole collection of techniques are explained theoretically and are next illustrated in the tutorials, the exercises, and the laboratory work. Some examples are: the S-parameters, the reflection coefficient, the VSWR, the reflectometric setup, and the singe- and double-stub matching techniques.

Finally some energetic concepts of the propagation of the electromagnetic fields in the free space are touched. The vector of Poynting is used to introduce the basics of the theory of the antennas and to calculate the power balance of a radio propagation.

The course is split in the Lectures and practical work.

Identification of Dynamical Systems - 4 credits

This course describes the various steps one has to go through for obtaining a linear dynamic model of a process. It starts with the choice (design) of the measurement setup, the choice (design) of the excitation signal, the choice of the parametric model (discrete time, continuous time, parametric versus non-parametric noise model...), the estimation of the parametric model (identification toolboxes in Matlab), till finally the model selection and the model validation. Hereby the influence of each error source (stochastic measurement errors, systematic measurement errors, non-linear distortions, time-variant effects, model errors...) on the final result is studied in detail.

Each step is illustrated thoroughly by means of real life examples.

The course starts with the basic techniques necessary to predict the stochastic behaviour of an estimator (consistency, bias, efficiency, probability density function, robustness). Furthermore, the continuous thread throughout the entire course is the formulation of the maximum likelihood solution starting from the measured data. This approach has the advantage that provides the estimated model with an estimate of its uncertainty.

Industrial Measurement Environments - 4 credits

This course discusses some topics in industrial measurement setups and systems. The course concentrates on a general perspective over the field. A selection of the topics can be found below

  • The role of metrology in innovation and in society.
  • Definitions of measurements. Metrology and the meter convention. Role of electrical measurements and overview of their building blocks.
  • Computer controlled measurement systems: evolution and advantages of automated systems in industrial measurements and control
  • Interfaces: electrical lines and interface busses and their most important properties.
  • Interface standards for computer controlled systems: EIA232, IEEE488.
  • Instrumentation controllers and controller software, Software frameworks for instrument control.
  • Industrial control via PLC.
  • Industrial systems based on Ethernet, Hart, DeviceNet, CAN, Fieldbus and PROFIBUS.

Information and Communication Technology - 3 credits

This work college has multiple aims. First, it is the goal to build a bridge between the highly theoretical courses and the practical applications in order to stimulate the future engineers. Second, it is the aim that the students get in touch with electronics, photonics and information theory (EIT), and in addition has some knowledge about control theory. This will enable the students to make an educated choice about what they want to study later on. A last goal is to inform the non-EIT students about some fundamental aspects on EIT and control theory.

The aim of the work college is to control the heighted of a floating pint-pong ball. This ping-pong ball is positioned within a plexiglas tube and a ventilator blowing in this tube....

Measurement and Identification - 4 credits

Engineers and scientists built models to understand, describe, predict and control the behaviour of the environment. In order to create these models it is necessary to combine the mathematical models with (noisy) measurements. In this course general methods are given in order to obtain good measurements, and to use these data to build a model.

Measurement techniques
Analog specification of measurement hardware
Stochastic characterisation of measurement problems.
Computer controlled measurement systems

- Why do we need identification methods?
- The 'ideal' estimator
- A systematic approach of the identification problem
- Estimation in the presence of errors on the input and output data.
- Model selection and validation
- Numerical optimization methods
- Recursive identification
- Kalman filtering

Measuring and Modelling of Nonlinear Systems - 3 credits

Goal: to give an intuitive insight in the behaviour of nonlinear systems. For that purpose we first provide the attendees with a theoretical framework that will be used next to develop a number of tools that can be easily used in practice to characterize nonlinear systems...

Physical Communication - 6 credits

ntroduction to the modulation and coding schemes / detection and estimation of signals.

Multiplexing and Carrier techniques.

  1. Time Division Multiplexing (TDMA)
  2. Multi-carrier Communications: OFDM and MIMO systems (FDMA)
  3. Spread Spectrum Communications.(CDMA)

Physical layer / hardware realizations for

  1. (broadband) wireless communications, including the channel (=propagation) modelling for wireless communication systems.
  2. wired communications systems: elements of Digital Subscriber Loops (xDSL)
  3. optical communication systems

All properties will be demonstrated using wireless standards (WiFi, DAB, Wireless Local Area Networks, WiMAX, Wireless Mesh Networks, LoRa Sensor and Ad Hoc Networks) and wired standard (ADSL, VDSL, ...)

RF/Microwave Design Techniques: from Datasheet to Product - 4 credits

  • System-level architectural analysis of RF/microwave receiver/transmitters.
  • Design of the different RF/microwave sub-systems (LNA, mixer, filters, antenna’s) using commercial software.
  • Analysis of critical building blocks
  1. Simulation using electromagnetic field solvers
  2. Measurement of prototype realization
  • ESD protection of circuit and systems
  • Tolerance and yield analysis / optimization
  1. Monte-Carlo techniques
  2. Worst-case distance methods
  • Realization and measurement of the transmitter/receiver circuit.
  • Reporting on the design

Signal Theory - 4 credits

The general content is as follows:

Introduction to signal and information theory: terminology, elements in a communication system, signal classification: deterministic, stochastic, and periodic signals.

The properties of stochastic signals:.

Estimation of signals in the sense of the least squares.

Study of modulations: modulation-demodulation techniques + power spectra

Information theory.

Development of codes with unequal length and optimized coding.

System and Control Theory - 6 credits

The course consists of two parts.
Part 1: Introduction to system theory. Describing the behaviour of linear dynamic systems (continuous time, discrete time) in the time domain and in the frequency domain. It is also shown how these descriptions can be combined with information from measurements (sampling, discrete Fourier transform, reconstruction).

Part 2: analysis (calculus with block diagrams, state equations, time response frequency response, root locus, Nyquis diagram, Bode plot) and design of feedback controllers (state feedback controllers, compensation regulators such as PD, lead, PI, lag, and PID). The course ends with a number of practical examples such as de operational amplifier, de voltageregulator, and the compact disc player

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