Circuits and Systems for Radio-Frequency


It is intended that the student, at the end of this course, acquire the knowledge and skills for the analysis and design of transceivers and electronic systems for modern wireless communication using monolithic integrated circuits like "System on Chip" (SoC) and VLSI circuit technology, namely CMOS technology at nano and microscale. In summary:

- Obtain knowledge about radio-frequency (RF) integrated electronic systems and respective architectures

- Be able to analyze and characterize an RF system and understanding the limitations of current technologies

- Analyze and design the fundamental building blocks of a digital radio transceiver

- Be able to use software tools (CAD) for simulation and RF design

- Implement and test hybrid software and hardware solutions, using software-defined radio platforms (SDR)

- Relate all the relevant technical information and skills for the success of the project execution.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

João Pedro Abreu de Oliveira


Weekly - 4

Total - 56

Teaching language



Advanced circuit analysis in CMOS technology

Introductory knowledge of RF electronics


1- H. Darabi, “Radio Frequency Integrated Circuits and Systems”, Second Edition, Cambridge Univ. Press, 2020

2- B. Razavi , "Rf Microelectronics, 2nd Edition", PTR Prentice Hall, 2012

3- T. H. Lee, The Design of CMOS Radio-Frequency Integrated Circuits, Cambridge Univ.Press, ISBN 0-521-83539-9,2004

4- IEEE SSCS, ComSoc and CAS journal papers
5- R. Ludwig, P. Bretchko, “ RF Circuit Design, Theory and Applications”, Prentice Hall, 2000
6- Pozar, David M., “Microwave Engineering”, Wiley International Edition, 2004
7- Gonzalez,Guillermo, “Microwave Transistor Amplifiers”, 2nd Edition, Prentice Hall, 1997
8- Cripps, Steve C., “RF Power Amplifiers for Wireless Communications”, Artech House, 1999

Teaching method

Theoretical exposition and analysis of case studies: through a series of lessons (with a working session profile) that promotes the participation of trainees. The explanation is supported in written information using a multimedia setup, with synchronized slides, multimedia components, in a dynamic way with the objective of maintaining a high degree of attention.  Each topic is supported by the analysis of real cases.

In total articulation with the theoretical classes, the practical classes are used for the laboratory experimentation of the theoretical concepts, namely the experimental characterization of a low noise amplifier, mixer, and configuration and test of an SDR platform. In addition, these classes are used to carry out the overall design project of a digital transceiver. The student''s assessment is supported on problem-solving individual assignments, experimentation labs and global project (to be executed in a group of 2 elements)

Evaluation method

Problem Series (or quiz) individual 1:        S1 : 15%

Problem Series (or quiz) individual 2:        S2 : 15%

LAB 1 (individual)         LAB1 : (?)

Project (group)       PROJ : 70%

Final Mark = (S1+S2)*15% + PROJ * 70%

Subject matter

- Overview of digital radio transceivers systems: link model, architectures, standards and specifications

- Analysis, design and simulation of radio-frequency (RF) systems: monolithic technology for RF, active and passive devices modeling, computer aider design (CAD) tools (Cadenece/SpectreRF) for RF; Software defined radios (SDR) based on GNUradio.

- RF front-ends modules for integrated transceivers and SDR platforms; Noise, sensitivity; Nonlinearity and distortion; Dynamic range.

 - Low noise amplifiers in RF-CMOS: topologies, noise and distortion analysis, design

- RF mixers in RF-CMOS: topologies, noise and distortion analysis, design

- Oscillators, phase-locked loops and frequency synthesizers: topologies, noise and distortion analysis, design

-RF power amplifiers in RF-CMOS: switched and current source based classes of operation, power gain and efficiency, design

- Analysis and project of a zero-IF or Low-IF transceiver front-end for RF-CMOS integration