Radio Architectures

Wireless communications is a pervasive and rapidly evolving field. It enables cellular systems, ad hoc computer networks, implanted medical devices, and smart grids—with each application stressing the system differently.

Every wireless device relies on a radio transceiver to establish the communications link. The radio transceiver operates within the wireless network and adheres to a specific modulation format that generally varies with the application. Demystifying the link between the modulation format, wireless network, and the radio transceiver is key to designing better communications systems.

This intense course introduces important digital communications concepts, covers critical system issues, and explores key trade-offs related to the radio transceiver. Instruction features the mathematical equations, simulation results, and performance curves essential to the analysis and design of radio systems. The course also presents in-depth information on delta-sigma modulation techniques used in fractional-N PLLs and data converters.

Course Materials

Lecture notes are distributed on the first day of the course. These notes are for participants only and are not for sale.

Coordinator and Lecturer

John B. Groe, MS, Principal Consultant, Innovate Radio, San Diego, California. Mr. Groe has been investigating and developing advanced radio architectures and circuit concepts for over 25 years. During this time, he has designed several radio transceivers for a wide range of applications, including a multimode direct conversion receiver and wideband polar transmitter. He also has extensive experience with fractional-N phase-locked loops and ΔΣ-modulated data converters.

Mr. Groe’s research combines in-depth system and circuit knowledge developed at leading wireless communications companies, including Nokia and TRW. During his time at Nokia, he directed focused research activities at UCLA, UCSD, and UCB. His research has led to 45 patents and several other applications—all in the field of wireless communications.

Mr. Groe is the author of a number of journal papers, is a peer reviewer, and is recognized as a Senior Member of IEEE. He is coauthor of CDMA Mobile Radio Design and a contributor to Circuits and Systems for Future Generations of Wireless Communications. He is a part-time professor at UCSD and a guest lecturer at UCLA.

Course Program

Introduction to Radio Communications

  • Applications
  • Digital modulation formats
  • Signal properties
  • Link budget


  • Architectures: zero and low-IF approaches
  • Sampled solutions
  • ΔΣ modulation techniques
  • A/D converters
  • Digital receiver functions
  • Diversity benefits


  • Integer and fractional-N PLL details
  • Digital PLL concept


  • RF modulators: direct I/Q and polar modulation
  • PA issues
  • PA modulation

Advanced Solutions

  • Medical transceiver
  • Software-defined radio receiver

For more information contact the Short Course Program Office:
shortcourses@uclaextension.edu | (310) 825-3344 | fax (310) 206-2815