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First Semester 
Teaching style
Lingua Insegnamento

Informazioni aggiuntive

Course Curriculum CFU Length(h)


A significant number of services and systems, not only related to the information engineering, base their operation on the use of electromagnetic fields.

The general objective of the course is therefore to provide the fundamental knowledge and ability of the so-called "electromagnetic fields engineering". They are required to understand and analyze those systems and services, as well as to develop the first skills necessary to design them or integrate them into more complex systems.

The detailed objectives are:

Knowledge and understanding: students must know the properties of electromagnetic fields and the main devices that use them and be able to correctly evaluate the effects of electromagnetic phenomena on the behavior of ICT (and, more generally, electronic) equipments.

Ability to apply knowledge and understanding: thanks to the approach adopted during the course, at the end the student will have developed the ability to apply standard solutions to the various cases that he may face, and will be able to build an appropriate model of a physical situation, which then he can solve and interpret the mathematical solutions found.

Learning skills: the knowledge acquired will allow the student to subsequently deal with the study, integration and design of equipment, systems and services that use electromagnetic fields; these will also be useful to those who will not deal directly with these activities, as it will allow future engineers to interact efficiently with the designers of electromagnetic devices, which are increasingly widespread in all electronic and ICT systems, as well as in many systems of diagnostics and measurement, particularly in the physical and biomedical fields.


A good knowledge and abilities in college math and physics and in applied math (with a focus on differential and integral calculus in 1,2,3 variables, vector algebra and analysis, complex number and complex exponentials, simple differential equations, Fourier transform) are required to face the course and to pass the exam.

Moreover, the course require a good knowledge, ability and competencies on circuit theory, above all on AC circuits.


The course objective is to give the basic knowledge required to understand, analize and design ICT and electronic systems based on the use of electromagnetic field at RF and microwave frequencies.
The course takes an approach strongly model-oriented, based on a firm knowledge of math and physics. One of the main focus is the build-up and solution of models of those systems, mainly related to radio communications.

The syllabus is as follows.
Maxwell equations and theorems (lectures: 10h, numerical applications: 2h): Maxwell equations, materials, energy and power theorems, reciprocity, equivalence, uniqueness.
Plane wave propagation (lectures: 8h, numerical applications: 6h): plane waves, polarization, propagation in material media, group speed, plane interfaces.
Transmission lines and matching networks (lectures: 14h, numerical applications: 14h): propagation in ideal transmission lines, maximization of load power, non-ideal transmission lines.
Antennas and radio-links (lectures: 15h, numerical applications: 9h): elementary sources, Green function, Effective height and gain, Wire antennas and arrays, receiving antennas, free-space radio links, antennas and radio-links on the ground, RFID.

Teaching Methods

The development of classroom lectures will be organized so that all topics will be connected in an unique discourse. In this way, the reasoning abilities of the students will be developed. The connections with other courses, or with the professional activities, will be enlighted. The numerical applications will focus on the ability to build up a suitable model of the object (or phenomenon), and to solve it to get the required results.
During the first week or so of lectures the main results of vector algebra and analysis, and of complex number computations will be summarized. The knowledge of these topics will be tested before, and after, these lectures.

Teaching will be done in the classroom. Some lectures could be integrated with multimedia materials or with streaming.

Verification of learning

The final verification consists of a written part (maximum 14 points) and an oral exam (maximum 20 points). The written part is based on analysis and synthesis problems of small antenna arrays and radio-links, while the oral part consists of a thorough discussion on one of the course topic.
To pass the exam, a student must pass separately the written part (i.e., to get there a minimum of 5 points) and the oral part (i.e., to get there a minimum of 12 points), and the sum of the two partial marks, which is the result of the complete exam, must be at least 18.

In detail, passing the exam requires a correct knowledge of the course topics, an adequate ability in the use of the tools developed and a minimum of skills.
Clearly, the higher the demonstrated level of ability and above all skills, the higher final grade.

Actually, both parts of the exam serve to verify both the knowledge and the abilities acquired, even if written and oral verify different abilities.
In particular, in the written part, the tools presented must be used to obtain numerical answers to the problems, while during the oral it is necessary to be able to carry out analytical developments.
Passing the written part obviously requires good skils and competence. However, as the proposed problems can be decomposed into simpler and more standard parts, passing the written part of this course requires both the ability to decompose a problem into simpler problems, which is fundamental in engineering practice, and to have the necessary skills to link different topics to solve at least the simplest subproblems. It should also be said that a mark close to the maximum in the written part requires a good competence on all aspects of the problem, even the most complex ones.
Similarly, knowledge and abilities are sufficient to pass the oral exam, but a high assessment requires the student to demonstrate a good level of skills and competence


Course notes;
Set of exercises (both introductory and exam-level);
More (introductory) exercises on:
J.A. EDMINISTER: Theory and problems of Electromagnetics (Schaum) - McGraw-Hill;
S.A. NASAR: 2000 Solved problems in Electromagnetics - McGraw-Hill;
More info on the course topics can be found in the following books.
Selection of topics and level comparable to the lectures:
G. CONCIAURO, L. PERREGRINI: Fondamenti di Onde elettromagnetiche, Ed. McGraw-Hill;
More formal:
G. FRANCESCHETTI: Campi Elettromagnetici, Ed. Bollati Boringhieri;
G. CONCIAURO: Introduzione alle Onde elettromagnetiche, Ed. McGraw-Hill,
More descriptive (the first one on the physical bases, the others ones on engineering applications):
D. FLEISCH: A Student's Guide to Maxwell's Equations - Cambridge Univ. Press;
F. MORICHETTI, A. MELLONI: Mezzi di trasmissione per l'informazione

S. RAMO, J. WHINNERY, A. VAN DUZER: Fields and Waves for Communication Engineering - J. Wiley and Sons

For a more phisical view on the topics of the course:
J.D. JACKSON: classical Electrodynamics , J. Wiley and Sons.

More Information

All the lecture notes will be available, togheter with the numerical exercises developed, on the Moodle site of the course (
A number of further exam problems will be given, too. Some of them will be complemented with full solutions, or hints fo solutions, while other contains only some results, or hint for solution, or none at all, to allow students to develop their own procedures and become able to assess the relative correctness.

Questionnaire and social

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