Software-Defined Radio

EC ENGR 850.80

This course presents design and analysis of the software defined radio systems and the digital signal processing-based architectures.


About this course:

A software-defined radio (SDR) is a communication system that performs many of its required signal processing tasks in a programmable digital signal processing (DSP) engine. The engine is coupled to the air interface consisting of analog circuits and antennae by analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters. Software changes reprogram the DSP segment of the radio’s physical layer to reconfiguring the radio and can thus synthesize multiple radios. Software control also is employed to select and alter the air interface segment as well as the higher-level data processing layers of the radio system. Why field a reconfigurable radio? The answer, of course, is to support communications between a wide range of communication systems. Further, as new waveforms are developed and deployed, or as standards incorporate new features rather than field another waveform specific radio, an SDR can be programmed to be the new radio. By permitting existing hardware and software to incorporate new wireless features and capabilities through software upgrades, the SDR offers the promise of reduced cost, wider utilization, and delayed obsolescence. This course presents an overview of the software radio systems and the new DSP-based architectures leading radio innovation. The instructors develop and illustrate the flexibility afforded the SDR by multirate signal processing techniques. Real-time MATLAB simulations illustrate essential concepts for a number of SDR systems. The GNU radio, a low-cost but powerful way to get involved in SDR, is used to demonstrate many of the important SDR concepts. The Ettus Research Company’s Universal Software Radio Peripheral (USRP) product family serves as the platform to illustrate the flexibility of the software-hardware interface.

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