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ELEC5723: Foundations of Simulations & Numerical Solutions in Eng (2014 - Semester 2)

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Unit: ELEC5723: Foundations of Simulations & Numerical Solutions in Eng (6 CP)
Mode: Normal-Day
On Offer: Yes
Level: Postgraduate
Faculty/School: School of Electrical & Computer Engineering
Unit Coordinator/s: Professor Vucetic, Branka
Session options: Semester 2
Versions for this Unit:
Site(s) for this Unit:
Campus: Camperdown/Darlington
Pre-Requisites: None.
Prohibitions: COSC1001 OR COSC1901.
Brief Handbook Description: Objectives:

* How to apply the software package Matlab to achieve engineering solutions

* Critical assessment of various computer numerical techniques

* Professional project management, teamwork, ethics

This unit assumes an understanding of the fundamental concepts and building blocks of electrical and electronics circuits. As well as covering the specific topics described in the following paragraphs, it aims to develop skills in professional project management and teamwork and promote an understanding of ethics.

Basic features of Matlab. The Matlab desktop. Interactive use with the command window. Performing arithmetic, using complex numbers and mathematical functions. Writing script and function m-files. Matrix manipulations. Control flow. Two dimensional graphics. Application of Matlab to simple problems from circuit theory, electronics, signals and systems and control. Investigation of the steady state and transient behaviour of LCR circuits.

Matlab based numerical solutions applicable to numerical optimization, ordinary differential equations, and data fitting. Introduction to symbolic mathematics in Matlab. Applications, including the derivation of network functions for simple problems in circuit analysis. Introduction to the use of Simulink for system modelling and simulation.
Assumed Knowledge: ELEC1103. Understanding of the fundamental concepts and building blocks of electrical and electronics circuits and aspects of professional project management, teamwork, and ethics.
Timetable: ELEC5723 Timetable
Time Commitment:
# Activity Name Hours per Week Sessions per Week Weeks per Semester
1 Lecture 1.00 1 13
2 Laboratory 3.00 1 13
3 Independent Study 4.00 13
4 Project Work - own time 3.00 4
T&L Activities: Independent Study: Prepare next class topic and come with questions in mind; read textbook and make use of other information resources.

Project Work - own time: Carry out research and complete the assignment project and report

Attributes listed here represent the key course goals (see Course Map tab) designated for this unit. The list below describes how these attributes are developed through practice in the unit. See Learning Outcomes and Assessment tabs for details of how these attributes are assessed.

Attribute Development Method Attribute Developed
Application of specific engineering software such as Matlab, to solve both clearly and non-clearly defined problems. Design (Level 2)
Use of engineering software such as Matlab in the context of circuit theory, control, systems, symbolic algebra and various applied mathematical areas. Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3)
Fundamental engineering knowledge applied to problems with Matlab, including second order circuits. Maths/Science Methods and Tools (Level 2)
Use of information resources in assignments and computer laboratory with concomitant critical information assessment for engineering application. Information Seeking (Level 2)
Communicate clearly and effectively using varied formats, as appropriate for computer laboratory team tasks, written reports and assignments. Communication (Level 2)
Understanding of the engineering environment, professional and ethical standards through teamwork in laboratory, case studies in lectures and laboratory, the assignment project and open discussion. Professional Conduct (Level 1)
Work on laboratory projects to achieve specified goals with partner(s). Plan and complete assignment project. Project and Team Skills (Level 1)

For explanation of attributes and levels see Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table.

Learning outcomes are the key abilities and knowledge that will be assessed in this unit. They are listed according to the course goal supported by each. See Assessment Tab for details how each outcome is assessed.

Design (Level 2)
1. Ability to analyse and solve problems using Matlab in command mode and by writing m-files and displaying results in specific engineering problems.
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3)
2. Ability to use Matlab proficiently for specific analysis, including LCR circuits, system analysis with Laplace transforms and other engineering specific applications.
Maths/Science Methods and Tools (Level 2)
3. Ability to demonstrate understanding of the concepts of applied mathematics in the context of specific engineering problems.
Information Seeking (Level 2)
4. Ability to select and synthesise information from various resources for specific engineering projects.
Communication (Level 2)
5. Ability to communicate clearly and effectively in laboratory team tasks and written reports.
6. Ability to communicate in written and computer-based format to deliver meaningful summaries of engineering project work.
Professional Conduct (Level 1)
7. Ability to demonstrate an understanding of the engineering environment, professional and ethical standards to the limit of lectures, assignment, laboratory, group work, case studies and class discussion.
Project and Team Skills (Level 1)
8. Ability to work constructively in a team by clarifying collaborative duties and encouraging contribution from all members to achieve specific engineering project goals.
Assessment Methods:
# Name Group Weight Due Week Outcomes
1 Assignment No 15.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8,
2 Log Book Yes 10.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8,
3 Final Exam No 75.00 Exam Period 1, 2, 3,
Assessment Description: Assignment: Assignment submission

Log Book: Lab performance and Notebook

Final Exam: Final Examination
Grade Type Description
Standards Based Assessment Final grades in this unit are awarded at levels of HD for High Distinction, DI (previously D) for Distinction, CR for Credit, PS (previously P) for Pass and FA (previously F) for Fail as defined by University of Sydney Assessment Policy. Details of the Assessment Policy are available on the Policies website at . Standards for grades in individual assessment tasks and the summative method for obtaining a final mark in the unit will be set out in a marking guide supplied by the unit coordinator.
Policies & Procedures: See the policies page of the faculty website at for information regarding university policies and local provisions and procedures within the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies.
Prescribed Text/s: Note: Students are expected to have a personal copy of all books listed.
  • Introduction to Matlab for Engineers
Online Course Content:
Note on Resources: Modern Control Systems, R. C. Dorf and R. H. Bishop, 8th edition, Addison-Wesley,


An Engineer’s Guide to MATLAB, 2nd Edn, Edward Magrab et al, Prentice Hall, 2005.

Electrical Engineering: Principles and Applications, 4th Edn, A. R .Hambley, Pearson

2008 [circuits].

Introduction to Electric Circuits, 6th Edn, R. C. Dorf and J. A. Svoboda, Wiley, 2004


Mastering MATLAB 7, D. Hanselman and B. Littlefield, Prentice Hall, 2005.

Numerical Methods with MATLAB Implementation and Application, Gerald Recktenwald, Prentice Hall, 2000.

Note that the "Weeks" referred to in this Schedule are those of the official university semester calendar

Week Description
Week 1 Lecture: Introduction to Matlab
Week 2 Lecture: Programming in Matlab 1
Week 3 Lecture: Programming in Matlab 2
Week 4 Lecture: Symbolic math/circuits 1
Week 5 Lecture: Laplace transform/circuits 2
Week 6 Lecture: Lag compensation/Assignment
Week 7 Lecture: Statistics/data files
Week 8 Lecture: Numerical Methods/Matrices
Week 9 Lecture: Differential equations
Week 10 Lecture: Signals and linear systems
Week 11 Lecture: Lag compensation/revision
Week 12 Lecture: Revision
Week 13 Lecture: Revision
Exam Period Assessment Due: Final Exam

Course Relations

The following is a list of courses which have added this Unit to their structure.

Course Year(s) Offered
Master of Professional Engineering (Electrical) 2013, 2014
Master of Professional Engineering (Power) 2013, 2014
Master of Professional Engineering (Telecommunications) 2013, 2014

Course Goals

This unit contributes to the achievement of the following course goals:

Attribute Practiced Assessed
Design (Level 2) Yes 28.57%
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3) Yes 27.14%
Maths/Science Methods and Tools (Level 2) Yes 28.57%
Information Seeking (Level 2) Yes 3.57%
Communication (Level 2) Yes 5%
Professional Conduct (Level 1) Yes 3.57%
Project and Team Skills (Level 1) Yes 3.57%

These goals are selected from Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table which defines overall goals for courses where this unit is primarily offered. See Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table for details of the attributes and levels to be developed in the course as a whole. Percentage figures alongside each course goal provide a rough indication of their relative weighting in assessment for this unit. Note that not all goals are necessarily part of assessment. Some may be more about practice activity. See Learning outcomes for details of what is assessed in relation to each goal and Assessment for details of how the outcome is assessed. See Attributes for details of practice provided for each goal.