ECE 435A

Digital Communications Systems
Catalog Data: 

ECE 435 - Digital Communication (3 units)

Description: Comprehensive introduction to digital communication principles. The major part of the course is devoted to studying how to translate information into a digital signal to be transmitted, and how to retrieve the information back from the received signal in the presence of noise and intersymbol interference (ISI). Various digital modulation schemes are discussed through the concept of signal space. Analytical and simulation models for digital modulation systems are designed and implemented in the presence of noise and ISI. Optimal receiver models for digital base-band and band-pass modulation schemes are covered in detail.

Grading: Regular grades are awarded for this course: A B C D E

May be convened with ECE 535A

ECE 340A. Recommended: ECE 310 or ECE 503

None required

Supplemental books
Proakis, J.G. Digital Communications. 4th ed. McGraw-Hill, 2000.
Proakis, J.G., and M. Salehi. Communication Systems Engineering. 2nd ed. Prentice Hall, 2002.

Course Learning Outcomes: 

By the end of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Understand and compute Shannon capacity of various communications channels
  2. Write software and analyze source coding algorithms such as Huffman, arithmetic and Ziv-Lempel coding, and channel coding schemes as convolutional codes and linear block codes
  3. Rigorously analyze and develop simulation models for coded digital communications systems such as PSK, ASK and QAM
  4. Design optimal detectors in presence of AWGN
Course Topics: 

Review of mathematical tools

  • Orthogonal functions
  • Probability theory
  • Random processes
  • Markov processes

Information theory

  • Information measures: self-information, mutual information, channel capacity
  • Lossless source coding
  • Huffman codes
  • Channel coding
  • Shannon coding theorems

Representation of band-pass signals and systems

  • Band-pass signals and noise representation (Hilbert transform)
  • Signal space representation

Digital modulation schemes

  • Memoryless digital modulation methods: ASK, PSK, FSK, QPSK
  • Modulation with memory (base-band and band-pass)
  • Spectra of digitally modulated signals

Optimum receivers for additive white Gaussian noise (AWGN) channel

  • Maximum a posteriori and maximum likelihood detection
  • Matched filter demodulation
  • Sequence detectors
  • Symbol by symbol MAP detector for channels with memory
  • Receiver performance

Error control coding fundamentals

  • Finite fields
  • Generator and parity check matrices
  • Block and convolutional codes
  • Hamming codes
  • Syndrome decoding
Class/Laboratory Schedule: 

Two 75-minute lectures per week

Relationship to Student Outcomes: 

ECE 435A contributes directly to the following specific electrical and computer engineering student outcomes of the ECE department:

  • Ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science and engineering (high)
  • Ability to design a system, component or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints, such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability and sustainability (high)
  • Ability to identify, formulate and solve engineering problems (high)
  • Ability to use the techniques, skills and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice (medium)
Prepared by: 
Bane Vasic
Prepared Date: 

University of Arizona College of Engineering