Electronics is all around us today: in our homes, the workplace, cars and even on

or in our bodies. It’s hard to believe that it was only in 1947 that the transistor was

developed by American physicists John Bardeen, Walter Brattain, and William

Shockley. The invention of the transistor paved the way for cheaper radios,

calculators and computers.

This unit introduces students to the use of electronics manufacturers’ data to

analyse the performance of circuits and devices, the operational characteristics of

amplifier circuits, the types and effects of feedback on a circuit performance, and

the operation and application of oscillators. They will also be introduced to the

application of testing procedures to electronic devices and circuits, and use the

findings of the tests to evaluate their operation.

Among the topics included in this unit are: power amplifiers, class A, B and AB;

operational amplifiers, inverting, non-inverting, differential, summing, integrator,

differentiator; types such as open, closed, positive and negative feedback;

frequency, stability, frequency drift, distortion, amplitude, wave shapes and testing


On successful completion of this unit students will be able to determine the

operational characteristics of amplifier circuits, investigate the types and effects of

feedback on an amplifier’s performance, examine the operation and application of

oscillators and apply testing procedures to electronic devices and circuits.

The use of Computer Aided Design (CAD) and simulation in the electronic and

electrical engineering industry is ever growing. Commercial software packages

enable an engineer to design, simulate, model and predict the outcome of a design

before a product has been made. This enables time and cost savings in the

development of a product whilst enabling the engineer to further develop their


The aim of this unit is to introduce students to the availability and use of

commercial software packages within electronics engineering, including design,

simulation, simple microprocessor programming and evaluation of the tools


On successful completion of this unit students will be able to research a range of

software tools or applications to support engineering functions related to

electronics, consider how a software package can be used to simulate the

behaviour of an electronic circuits function, explain how to programme a

microprocessor-based device to achieve a specified outcome/task, evaluate a

specific electronics software tool/application, describe the types of commercial

software available, compare the differences between a software simulation and a

real-world circuit, and write simple commands to a microcontroller.

The speed and efficiency of many industrial processes is due, largely, to the control

systems selected for the application and the engineer’s ability to apply the most

appropriate technology for their operation.

This unit presents a structured approach to the development of advanced electronic

solutions in a range of industrial situations. An essential requirement here is the

engineer’s ability to utilise the most appropriate technology for each application, to

ensure the most efficient monitoring and control of variables such as pressure,

temperature and speed.

Among the topics included in this unit are techniques and applications of electrical

and electronic engineering, as they apply to various branches of industry, such as

component handling, controlling the speed or torque of a motor or responding to

change of circumstances in a process.

On successful completion of this unit students will be able to describe system

elements and consider their overall characteristics. This provides opportunity for

analytically assessing the accuracy and repeatability of electronic instruments.

This unit presents a wide-ranging introduction to the field of existing and renewable

energy systems. There are many alternative sources of energy (some ‘green’)

which can be converted to an electrical form, providing energy for transport,

heat/cooling and lighting, as well as energy for various industrial processes and


Power electronic converters are an essential component of renewable and

distributed energy sources, including wind turbines, photovoltaics, marine energy

systems and energy storage systems. It is necessary to gain a clear understanding

of, and be able to examine, the technical implications of providing sustainable

electrical energy to meet the energy demand of the future.

The unit will also explore the potential impacts of climate change and why more,

and different forms of, sustainable energy sources are required together with the

need for energy efficiency measures.

By the end of this unit students will be able to examine the technological concepts

behind providing a sustainable electrical energy supply for the future. They will also

be able to describe how the fundamental technical and economic processes and

drivers at play in the electrical power industry affect the selection and use of

energy sources.