First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Science
Course unit
SCP7081701, A.A. 2019/20

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2019/20

Information on the course unit
Degree course Second cycle degree in
SC2382, Degree course structure A.Y. 2017/18, A.Y. 2019/20
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Number of ECTS credits allocated 6.0
Type of assessment Mark
Course unit English denomination APPLIED ELECTRONICS
Website of the academic structure
Department of reference Department of Physics and Astronomy
Mandatory attendance No
Language of instruction English
Single Course unit The Course unit can be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit can be chosen as Optional Course unit

Teacher in charge PIERO GIUBILATO FIS/01

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Educational activities in elective or integrative disciplines FIS/01 Experimental Physics 6.0

Course unit organization
Period Second semester
Year 1st Year
Teaching method frontal

Type of hours Credits Teaching
Hours of
Individual study
Lecture 6.0 48 102.0 No turn

Start of activities 02/03/2020
End of activities 12/06/2020
Show course schedule 2019/20 Reg.2017 course timetable

Prerequisites: - Basic solid-state physics on semiconductors (crystal lattice, Fermi distribution, levels energy distribution, etc.)
- Analogue electronics (linear networks, active and passive devices, amplifiers, operational amplifiers, filters, etc.)
- Standard programming languages (syntax, structure, use of libraries, etc.)
- Basic knowledge of computational software (e.g. Mathematica, Matlab)
Target skills and knowledge: The successful participant will learn how/to:

- An integrated circuit is designed and produced.
- Design a logic circuit through HDL description.
- Realize a logic function/algorithm and run it in a FPGA.
- Perform an actual task using FPGA hardware.
- Render a FPGA design tolerant to a radiation environment.
Examination methods: Oral exam
Assessment criteria: The criteria for the evaluation of the oral test take into account the correctness of contents, arguing clarity and critical analysis
Course unit contents: - Basic knowledge of device physics, diode and transistor, either BJT or MOS.
- Principle of working of the diode and the transistor (BJT and MOS). Ssimplified physical model of the MOS (implants, gate, oxide) and how this influences its performances (parasitic capacitance, power consumption, etc.)
- Basic circuits using diodes and transistor for specific purposes (rectifier, voltage pump, etc...).
- MOS transistor dynamic behavior, linear region, inversion region, saturation region, power consumption, speed, parasitics, etc. - --- Basic microelectronics manufacturing concepts (lithography, feature size, etc...).
- Basic logic gates (NOT, AND, NAND, ...) and their realization with CMOS transistors. More complex basic logic blocks like the adder, the multiplexer and the parity checker. Timing and power considerations in the realization of the basic gates. Boolean algebra basics (DeMorgan’s theorems) and its applications to basic gates combinations.
- Memory elements building blocks: mono-stable, bi-stable, S-R flip-flop, J-K flip-flop, D flip-flop and their properties. Look Up Tables and their usage for representing arbitrary functions. Actual memories type and use in computer and other logic: ROM, RAM, FLASH, EPROM, basic characteristics, behavior and device realization.
- Digital microelectronics basics: analog computers, noise margin, integration processes, microprocessors, Moore's law, the limit of scaling, analog/digital signal interface. Different level of design (system, behavioural, RTL, gates, transistor, device, ...) and the associate languages/tools..
- HDL languages and simulation tools of the trade: SPICE, what it is and how it works, ideal elements vs. real elements, MOS transistor basic model, example of IV curves for a MOS, response of an inverter and an operational amplifier. Verilog language scope and basics, concept of synthesis and simulation code, modules encapsulation, timebase definitions, some elementary syntax and constructs (especially the synchronous blocks like always, etc..).
- Synchronous systems: how to deal with large system by using a common time-base. The clock properties (frequency, jitter) and implications. Usage of memory elements to build a complete synchronous system. Finite State Machines types, principle of operation, and building elements. FSM analytical description and basic coding in Verilog.
- Implementation of simple synchronous circuits in FPGA through Verilog description. Definition of inputs, outputs, clock, and reset. Usage of device primitive for high-frequency clock domains. Usage of registers and counters. Implementation of simple state machines, connection of modules in a hierarchical structure. Simple IO interfaces (buttons, LEDs). Concept of synchronous communication over a single data line.
- Complex systems behavior and modelling, with special focus on radiation tolerance/resistance and mitigation techniques and topologies. Failure rate estimation through Markov Chains, protection schemes and their effectiveness, practical implementation.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: - Frontal lectures
- Interactive simulation of device/circuits with PSpice simulator.
- Interactive lessons with HDL synthesis and simulation of the circuits under discussion.
- System behavior modelling with Mathematica notebooks.
- Implementation of firmware in FPGA development boards.
Additional notes about suggested reading: - Slides shown during the lectures (see related Moodle page)
- PSPice code for analogue simulations
- Verilog code for digital simulations
- Mathematica notebooks for system failure modeling
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • A. Laicata, Circuiti elettronici. --: --, --. Cerca nel catalogo
  • T.H.Wilmshurst, Analog Cirtuit Techniques. --: --, --. Cerca nel catalogo
  • W.Kleitz, Digital Electronics - A Practical Approach with VHDL. --: --, --. Cerca nel catalogo

Innovative teaching methods: Teaching and learning strategies
  • Lecturing
  • Case study
  • Problem solving
  • Loading of files and pages (web pages, Moodle, ...)
  • Interactive programming

Innovative teaching methods: Software or applications used
  • Moodle (files, quizzes, workshops, ...)
  • Mathematica
  • PSpice and Verilog