The course provides the basic information useful for the understanding of digital systems operating principles. At the end of the course, students acquire a functional view of digital systems, familiarize with some of the basic simulation tools and are able to complete simple design experiences with low cost development boards.
Course contents summary
The Unit 2 of the course Digital Electronics: Fundamentals and Laboratory counts 3 CFUs (one CFU, University Credits equals one ECTS credit and represents the workload of a student during educational activities aimed at passing the exams), which corresponds to 24 hours of lectures. It aims to provide the students with the general criteria to analyze the behavior basic digital electronic circuits using simulation tools and/or development board (e.g. Arduino). Therefore, the contents proposed during the course include the following topics:
- Design workflow of digital systems
- Programmable development boards
- Formal description of simple combinational and sequential systems
- Simulation and middleware programming using development boards.
INTRODUCTION TO THE COURSE (2 h)
INTRODUCTION TO MATLAB AND SIMULINK (10 h)
- Variables and Workspace in MATLAB;
- Figure tool;
- Digital circuits modeled with Simulink to simulate transients with inputs changing over the time;
- Fundamentals blocks of Simulink, as Logical Operator, Constant, Signal Builder and Scope.
- Exercises implementing different digital circuits.
INTRODUTION TO PROGRAMMABLE DEVELOPMENT BOARDS (4 h):
- Microcontrollers and microprocessors;
- Reference web sites;
- Arduino UNO specifications;
- Other programmable development boards;
- Introduction to shields;
- Introduction to Thinkercad.
PROGRAMMING AND SIMULATING WITH ARDUINO (2 h):
- download and installation of the IDE programmer;
- the bootloader; the sketch (loop and setup);
- Hello Led! (first example of programming).
MODELS TO SIMULATE COMBINATORIAL AND SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS (6 h):
- Implementation of combinatorial and sequential circuits with Arduino.
The student can study the topics discussed during the course reading the following textbooks:
Paolo Aliverti, IL MANUALE DI ARDUINO: GUIDA COMPLETA, zeppelinmaker.it
ESERCIZI DI AUTOMAZIONE di Gianfranco Annessa, ISBN 9781291240368
The notes of the lectures and exercises will be available to students and shared on the Elly web site.
The module provides for mainly laboratory activities, where will be used some applications for Windows operating system. These applications will enable both the simulations and the hardware implementations of digital circuits, using protyping boards as Arduino.
Assessment methods and criteria
The exam includes an evaluation of laboratory activity with the development of a project.
To access the written test of the module 1, a positive evaluation of the work carried out to develop the project must be obtained. The project will consist in circuital simulations and digital systems programming using the tools presented during the course. Beyond the simulation and programming tools for digital system, the students have to be familiar with the use of PC.
The work done for the project will be evaluated as "accomplished" if the targets (stated when the project was committed) will be achieved.
Additional educational materials will be available accessing to the web site Elly of the Department of Engineering and Architecture of the University of Parma.