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ELE3506 Electronic Measurement

Semester 2, 2012 External Toowoomba
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Engineering & Surveying
School or Department : Electrical, Electronic & Computing

Contents on this page


Examiner: Andrew Maxwell
Moderator: Nigel Hancock


Pre-requisite: (ELE1502 and (ELE2101 or ELE2103) and (ELE2503 or ELE2504)) or Students must be enrolled in one of the following Programs: GCEN or GDET or METC or MEPR or MENS


Central to the profession of all electrical engineering professionals is the measurement of electrical quantities, or more generally, physical quantities whose values have been rendered electrical by a transducer. Such measurements are almost invariably made with the aid of electronics, and increasingly by sophisticated instrumentation which provides multidimensional displays and analytical capabilities. Automation of such measurements is also on the rapid increase. However, in the face of these developments the need to comprehend the physical principles of making accurate, precise and trustworthy measurements, particularly of small quantities (microvolts, microamperes), remains fundamental. It is the task of the engineering professional to be able to specify and evaluate equipment for a given measurements task; this requires an appreciation of electronic measurement systems : at the system level by an awareness of the range, operating principles and limitations of commercial test equipment; and, at the circuit level which includes the effects and minimisation of interference, certain commonly employed circuit and IC configurations such as the Phase Lock Loop and frequency synthesis, and choice of components and construction details. An important aspect of the operating requirements of equipment is the need for them to be electromagnetically compatible. It is also the responsibility of professionals to implement measurement systems with regard to their human and environmental impact, and some introduction to these issues is also provided.


The course objectives define the student learning outcomes for a course. On completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. discuss the operating principles of common electronic laboratory test equipment;
  2. apply the principles of operation of common electronic measuring equipment, and to assess the limitations of that equipment;
  3. measure the performance of electronic test equipment and electronic circuits;
  4. design appropriate techniques for minimising signal interference;
  5. select and justify amplifiers appropriate to an application;
  6. design, construct and evaluate electronic circuits for low-signal, high-interference environments;
  7. analyse the performance of Phase Lock Loops and calculate their parameters;
  8. discuss the principles of reliability theory as applied to electronic systems, and calculate composite reliability and subsystem redundancy;
  9. discuss human and environmental implications of measurement systems.


Description Weighting(%)
1. SIGNAL INTERFERENCE AND CORRUPTION the problem of measurement, input impedance, EMI and RFI, coupling paths, electromagnetic compatibility and techniques to reduce EMC problems. 20.00
2. ELECTRONIC MEASUREMENT COMPONENTS AND CIRCUITS operational amplifiers and their errors; instrumentation amplifiers; the Phase Lock Loop; frequency synthesis principles. 30.00
3. ELECTRONIC TEST EQUIPMENT analogue and digital voltmeters, current, power, gain and phase measurement; frequency and period measurement; the oscilloscope and CRT display; signal sources; analogue swept spectrum measurements; the digital oscilloscope and sampled measurement systems; quantisation, aliassing and interpolation problems; test equipment for digital systems; the logic analyser and honest reporting of results. 30.00
4. AUTOMATIC TEST EQUIPMENT the GPIB, operation, use and programming; internal design of GPIB-based test equipment and ethical considerations. 15.00
5. ELECTRONIC RELIABILITY component reliability, burn in, wear out and derating; MTBF; composite reliability and system MTBF; subsystem redundancy; high reliability systems; concepts of hybridisation and microelectronics. 5.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • Electronic components and test equipment as specified in study materials.
  • Instrumentation Amplifier Kit.
  • Optional - PCB design software - Altium Designer 6 (12 month student licence) (Complementary remote-access version of the above Altium Designer software is also available ? See the study materials and Study Desk for this course for further information).
  • Recommended - Electronic prototyping breadboard with minimum 800 holes, digital multimeter, electronic construction tools.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
  • Refer to USQ Study Desk.

Student workload requirements

Activity Hours
Assessments 15.00
Directed Study 40.00
Private Study 48.00
Project Work 40.00
Report Writing 12.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
AMPLIFIER DESIGN 160 16 13 Aug 2012
QUIZ 1 50 5 20 Aug 2012
QUIZ 2 50 5 15 Oct 2012
TIMED ASSIGNMENT 500 50 29 Oct 2012 (see note 1)

  1. The timed assignment comprises a series of questions requiring either calculations or written answers. The questions are different for each student and will be provided to students a short time prior to the due date. Full details are provided in the study materials.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    There are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students' responsibility to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item, a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks or a grade of at least C-.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    If students submit assignments after the due date without (prior) approval of the examiner then a penalty of 5% of the total marks gained by the student for the assignment may apply for each working day late up to ten working days at which time a mark of zero may be recorded.. No assignments will be accepted after model answers have been posted.

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade in a course a student must obtain at least 50% of the total weighted marks for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the weighted aggregate of the marks (or grades) obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    There is no examination in this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    There will be no Deferred or Supplementary examinations in this course.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must despatch the assignment to the USQ. The onus is on the student to provide proof of the despatch date, if requested by the Examiner.

  2. Students must retain a copy of each item submitted for assessment. This must be despatched to USQ within 24 hours if required by the Examiner.

  3. In accordance with University Policy, the Examiner may grant an extension of the due date of an assignment in extenuating circumstances.

  4. The usual method of assessment submission for this course is by electronic submission. All required electronic submissions must be made through Assignment Drop Boxes located on the USQ Study Desk for the course, unless directed otherwise by the examiner of the course. The due date for an electronically submitted assessment is the date by which a student must electronically submit the assignment. The assignment files must be submitted by 11.55pm on the due date using USQ time (as displayed on the clock on the course home page; that is, Australian Eastern Standard Time). Electronic submissions must be (i) in PDF format, and (ii) be typeset, or electronically scanned hand-written content.

  5. Assessment items not suitable for electronic submission (e.g. hardware based assessment) are to be dispatched via postal services.

  6. Students who do not have regular access to postal services for the submission of hardware-based assessments, or regular access to Internet services for electronic submission, or are otherwise disadvantaged by these regulations may be given special consideration. They should contact the examiner of the course to negotiate such special arrangements prior to the submission date.

  7. Students who have undertaken all of the required assessments in a course but who have failed to meet some of the specified objectives of a course within the normally prescribed time may be awarded one of the temporary grades: IM (Incomplete - Make up), IS (Incomplete - Supplementary Examination) or ISM (Incomplete -Supplementary Examination and Make up). A temporary grade will only be awarded when, in the opinion of the examiner, a student will be able to achieve the remaining objectives of the course after a period of non directed personal study.

  8. Students who, for medical, family/personal, or employment-related reasons, are unable to complete an assignment or to sit for an examination at the scheduled time may apply to defer an assessment in a course. Such a request must be accompanied by appropriate supporting documentation. One of the following temporary grades may be awarded IDS (Incomplete - Deferred Examination; IDM (Incomplete Deferred Make-up); IDB (Incomplete - Both Deferred Examination and Deferred Make-up).

  9. Harvard (AGPS) is the referencing system required in this course. Students should use Harvard (AGPS) style in their assignments to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The Harvard (AGPS) style to be used is defined by the USQ Library's referencing guide. //

Other requirements

  1. Students will require internet access to UConnect for this course.

  2. Students will require access to basic electronic manufacturing equipment for this course. Full details are provided in the study materials.