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Satellite Communications, Data Communications, and Simulation

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2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Information and Network Security

Tagged Division

Computing & Information Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.1270.1 - 22.1270.14



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Paper Authors


Maurice F. Aburdene Bucknell University

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Maurice Felix Aburdene is a Professor of Electrical Engineering and Professor of Computer Science at Bucknell University. His teaching and research interests include control systems, parallel algorithms, simulation of dynamic systems, distributed algorithms, computer communication networks, computer-assisted laboratories, and signal processing.

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Kundan Nepal Bucknell University

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Kundan Nepal is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering at Bucknell University. His research interests span the areas of reliable nanoscale digital VLSI systems, embedded computing using reconfigurable hardware and mobile robotics.

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Satellite Communications, Data Communications and Simulation AbstractWe describe two third-year level laboratory projects used in a linear systems and signalprocessing course. These projects can be used in communication, computer network andinformation systems courses, as well. The two projects address topics that are common inboth satellite and computer network data communications.The satellite communications project provides excellent applications of importantconcepts of signals: time shift, amplitude scaling, delay, echoes, and fading. Weintroduced students to a satellite communication system where a signal is transmittedfrom a ground transmitter, received by the satellite after some delay, and reflected back tothe ground receiver. Students analyzed the signal received by the ground station as thesum of the signal sent from the station and the signal reflected back from the satellite.This interesting project helped students to review sinusoidal signals, phasors, power, andto understand the effect of delays, echoes and fading. In addition, the students simulatedthe system using Matlab and Simulink, while getting to implement fundamental conceptsthey had previously learned in earlier courses.The second project focused on Fourier analysis of periodic signals and applications todata communication. Students were given the task of analyzing an 8-bit ASCII character,transmitted at a particular bit rate over a communication link with a given bandwidth.Specifically, students determined the harmonic content and time-response of both thetransmitted and received signals. Students programmed the Agilent 33220A 20 MHzFunction Generator to create the ASCII character and designed a filter to view andanalyze the output response. Students also used MATLAB and Simulink to simulate thecommunication model. This project reinforced concepts of periodic signals, Fourierseries, harmonics, phase shift, signal power, bit rate, link bandwidth, Nyquist's theoremand Shannon’s theorem for data transmission on a noisy channel.

Aburdene, M. F., & Nepal, K. (2011, June), Satellite Communications, Data Communications, and Simulation Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--18743

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