Skip to main content

Unit information: Microwave Engineering in 2015/16

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Microwave Engineering
Unit code EENGM5021
Credit points 10
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Professor. Railton
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering
Faculty Faculty of Engineering


The unit covers the basic theory and practice of microwave circuits and systems, and aims to give students an appreciation of the range of techniques currently used. A treatment of the different microwave components used in systems ranging from handheld radios to industrial microwave heating units is given. These include waveguides, micro-stripline, finline, waveguide junctions and directional couplers. An overview of available computer-aided design techniques will be given in order to give the student sufficient knowledge to choose the best method and tool for a specified purpose. A brief outline of the Finite Difference Time Domain method and the Method of Moments will be given.


Microwave Engineering Principles Prof C.J. Railton

  • Review of Maxwell's equations, plane waves and boundary conditions.
  • Reflection of plane waves at single and multiple material interfaces.
  • Waveguides, waveguide modes, microstrip, coplanar line and finline.
  • Waveguide discontinuities, stored energy in evanescent modes.
  • Theory and application of the S matrix.
  • Theory and practice of the directional coupler.
  • Computational methods for microwave circuit analysis.
  • Introduction to the Method of Moments.
  • Introduction to the Finite Difference Time Domain technique

Intended learning outcomes

Having completed this unit, students will be able to describe the properties and applications of different types of waveguide, including planar waveguide, and calculate fundamental parameters such as cut-off frequency and characteristic impedance. They will be able to describe quantitatively what happens when a plane wave impinges on one or more material boundaries. They will have a knowledge of waveguide modes and be able to derive their form for the case of rectangular waveguide. Students will have an appreciation of waveguide and microstripline discontinuities and their implications in microwave circuit design and will be able to discuss the issues involved in minimising the impact of unwanted reflections at discontinuities. They will be able to outline the steps involved in an FDTD or MoM analysis of a microwave circuit and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each method in the context of a specified problem.

Teaching details

Combination of lectures and laboratory sessions

Assessment Details

Terminal Exam 100% 2hrs

Reading and References

Pozar, D.H. Microvave Engineering, , 2011, ISBN 978-0470631553