## ECEN 2250 - Introduction to Circuits & Electronics

### Real Engineering Problems (REP)

Engineering is a profoundly creative process. A most elegant description is that engineering is about design under constraint.
-- from The Engineer of 2020.

The goal of the "Real Engineering Problem (REP)" assignments is to look at problems that require engineering solutions, and their relationship to the material treated in this course. The resulting technical essays need to be typed and will be graded for both the writing performance (spelling, grammar, structure, citations) and the technical content (correctness, relevance, completeness, depth). The REP assignments will be graded using the following rubric as a guideline.

• REP 01: The Transatlantic Cable. Read the following article (here is the original) about the history of the first transatlantic cable for telegraph communications. Write a short one paragraph essay characterizing the engineering problems that were encountered and how you think they (especially the electrical ones) relate to this class and to the engineering profession in general. This assignment is due Wed. 8/24/11.
• REP 02: Transmitted and Received Power in Cell Phones. Find at least two good references that specify what the typical and maximum transmit powers for cell phone transmitters are and what the typical and minimum received powers for cell phone receivers are. You will find that these powers may be expressed in watts or in decibel (dB or dBm). Look up the definitions of terms that you do not know and determine by how many orders of magnitude (approximately) the signal power gets attenuated between transmitter and receiver. How does this relate to what we are currently doing in class and in homework? Hint: During development and testing of cellphones the (variable) attenuation between transmitter and receiver needs to be simulated in a lab or a testing facility. Report your findings in the form of a short one to two paragraph essay which must include citations of the sources that you used. This assignment is due Wed. 9/7/11.
• REP 03: Supercapacitor Buses. What are supercapacitor buses? What are their features and advantages? What are their disadvantages? How are they related to what we will start in class next week? Find at least two good references that are related to this topic and write a short one or two paragraph essay about your findings and the (engineering) thoughts that they trigger. This assignment is due Wed. 9/14/11.