BSc Project (Communication Systems)

2019/2020

Content, progress and pedagogy of the module

Besides the traditional human-to-human communication (e. g. phone) or human-to-machine communication (e. g. web browsing), communication is also an indispensable subsystem of systems consisting of multiple distributed components. An example is a home automation system in which various sensors and actuators communicate through wireless links. Such a communication should satisfy multiple requirements. The data should arrive timely in order to be relevant for the control actions in the home automation system. Also, the data should be sent reliably, despite the possible transmission errors on the links. Finally, the communication should be energy efficient, in order not to drain quickly the batteries of the devices. The purpose of the project module is that the students consider a system or scenario in which communication among distributed components is required. The students need first to identify the requirements and the desired behavior of the communication (sub-)system that will be applied in that scenario. Next, the students need to consider one or more variants of the communication subsystems by analyzing the tradeoffs between different designs and parameters. Finally, the students need to evaluate the performance of the obtained communication subsystem, or, depending on the scenario, also the performance of the whole system that uses that subsystem. The previous steps may be repeated in several iterations.

Learning objectives

Knowledge

  • Must understand how to analyze the requirements posed to the communication system in a given scenario and propose a topology/network that can serve as a basis to carry out the communication in the given scenario
  • The student must be able to understand whether and how a certain communication technology can be applied in a given system. For example, whether the system setup allows mains-powered devices or some of the devices must be battery-powered, whether for a given subsystem a wired, wireless or combined solution is required, etc.
  • Must have knowledge about the building blocks in a generic communication system and the way they interact together in fulfilling the communication tasks. This consists of two steps: (1) identification of a technology that can serve as a starting basis to be evolved towards a communication solution that satisfies certain requirements; (2) identification of the key parts of the system/protocol stack that needs to be modified in order to meet the requirements.
  • Must have knowledge of the methodology to evaluate the performance of a certain communication system in terms of rate, throughput, good put, delay, packet dropping probability, etc.
  • Must be able to understand the fundamental tradeoffs that are faced when designing/implementing a communication system: achieving reliability at an expense of an increased delay; reliability of packet transmission vs. the packet size and the associated overhead, etc.

Skills

  • Must be able to analyze the communication scenario and specify the target requirements in terms of data rate, delay, error performance, etc.
  • Must be able to analyze which communication topology is suitable to be applied in a given scenario, and identify the key parts of the protocol stack that need to be synthesized in order to meet the target requirements.
  • Must be able to synthesize a communication system (or parts thereof) by applying some or all of the following techniques:
    • Segmenting the data into packets at the sender side and reassembling the data at the receiver side;
    • Apply techniques for flow control and management of data buffers
    • Apply techniques for error control through coding and ARQ protocols
    • Map the data to the physical transmission medium by using appropriate physical layer techniques (modulation, equalization, etc.) at the transmitter/receiver side
    • Propose and analyze protocols for accessing a shared communication medium and divide the communication resources among multiple users and connections.
    • Must be able to analyze the tradeoffs that arise from choosing different solutions and/or parameters
  • Must be able to evaluate a communication system (or parts thereof) in terms of the target performance measures (delay, rate, error performance, etc.) and validate that the design/implementation is operational according to the requirements
  • Must be able to communicate the above knowledge and skills (using terminology of the field), both orally and in a written reportĀ 

Competences

  • Must be able to identify, design, implement, and evaluate a viable solution for a communication system in a new context
  • Must be able to plan, structure and execute a project, within the subject-field of this project moduleĀ 

Type of instruction

Academically supervised student-governed problem oriented project work.

Lectures together with teacher/supervisor guided self-studies and/or mini projects.

Exam

Exams

Name of examBSc Project (Communication Systems)
Type of exam
Oral exam based on a project
ECTS20
Assessment7-point grading scale
Type of gradingExternal examination
Criteria of assessmentAs stated in the Joint Programme Regulations.

Facts about the module

Danish titleBachelorprojekt (Kommunikationssystemer)
Module codeESNEITB6P2
Module typeProject
Duration1 semester
SemesterSpring
ECTS20
Language of instructionDanish
Empty-place SchemeYes
Location of the lectureCampus Aalborg
Responsible for the module

Organisation

Study BoardStudy Board of Electronics and IT
DepartmentDepartment of Electronic Systems
FacultyTechnical Faculty of IT and Design