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Academic year
Didactic period
Primo Semestre

Training objectives

The course is focused on fundamental analog electronic systems and their different circuit components which are essential for the elaboration of analog electrical signals.

After the introduction of the electrical characteristics of the fundamental semiconductor devices, the main objective is to provide the student with the basic tools for linear and non-linear electronic circuit analysis and synthesis. Emphasis is put on the most important applications in analog electronics. In particular, the following electronic systems will be dealt with: power supplies, amplification systems, electronic systems for signal generation, acquisition and conditioning.

The student will learn:
- basic electrical characteristics of semiconductor devices;
- analysis and synthesis of analog electronic circuits;
- network functions and frequency response of amplifiers;
- elaboration of analog signals by means of operational amplifiers;
- basics of non-linear circuits: amplifiers and oscillators;
- basics of linear and switching power supplies.

The main acquired skills (i.e., the capability of applying what has been learnt) will be:
- selection of semiconductor devices for the specific circuit application;
- analysis of static and dynamic behavior of linear analog circuits;
- analysis and synthesis of linear amplifiers;
- implementation of analog functions by means of operational amplifiers;
- basic design of sinusoidal oscillators and class-A/class–B power amplifiers;
- basic design of power supplies.


The knowledge of the concepts and tools dealt with in the following courses are mandatory (within brackets the most important topics are put in evidence):
- Electrical Circuits (circuit components and related models, Kirchhoff laws and their application, Thevenin and Norton theorems)
- Foundations of Automatic (transfer and harmonic response functions, feedback and stability)
- Signals and Communications (time- and frequency-domain signals – signal spectra, modulation)

Course programme

90 hours of teaching are given, divided in lectures and exercises.


Introduction and background. A glimpse inside analog electronics. Circuit theory fundamentals. Power amplification and electron devices. Examples of non-linear elaboration of signals.

Semiconductor devices. Basics on semiconductors, doping and pn junction behavior. Diode and related models. Analysis of diode circuits. Bipolar and field-effect transistors: fundamentals, models and their application. Static analysis.

Power supplies. Rectifiers and associated filters. Use of transformers. Linear regulators. The transistor as a switch. Switching DC/DC regulators. Switching amplifier.

Amplification systems. The transistor as an amplifier. Transistor biasing. Linearized models (small signals). Elementary single-stage amplifiers (bandwidth and in-band behavior). Low- and high-frequency response of amplifiers. Analogy between BJT and FET small-signal amplifiers. Multi-stage amplifiers. Differential elaboration of signals. Differential amplifier. Class-A and B power amplifiers. Distortion, efficiency and thermal design. Amplification of angularly modulated signals (class-C amplifier) and analogy with switching PWM amplifiers.

Electronic systems for signal generation, acquisition and conditioning. Operational amplifiers. Background on negative feedback and desensitization. Circuits employing operational amplifiers. Non-idealities in operational amplifiers. Bandwidth limitation. Stability and compensation. Time-domain response and slew-rate. Active filters. Multivibrators (bistable, astable and monostable) and sinusoidal oscillators.

Exercises: analysis and synthesis exercises on different topics of the course and with emphasis on the final examination.

Didactic methods

The course is organized as follows:
- frontal lectures on all the topics of the course
- classroom analysis and synthesis exercises with emphasis on the final examination.

Learning assessment procedures

The examination can be carried out in English. The final examination is a written test composed of two parts.

- Analysis (static, dynamic, bandwidth) and synthesis exercises of electronic circuits and systems.
- Two theory questions on the course topics with the aim of evaluating the comprehension of the topics and the gained skills.

The two parts cannot be taken separately, and they must be both sufficient. They contribute equally to the final score.
If the examination score is sufficient, but the score is not accepted by the student it is possible to take an additional oral test (with increment/decrement of the score between +3 and -3.

The examination takes about 2,5 hours.
It is not allowed consulting any textbook or document.

Passing the exam is proof of having acquired the ability to apply knowledge related to semiconductor devices use and analysis and synthesis of electronic circuits for analog electrical signals elaboration.

Reference texts

Teaching material provided by the teacher.
Specific topics can be further developed in the following text:

R.C.Jaeger, T.N.Blalock, Microelectronics.

Additional texts:

Jacob Millman, Arvin Grabel, Microelectronics, Mc Graw-Hill.
Adel S. Sedra, Kenneth C. Smith, Microelectronic circuits, Oxford University Press.