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Remark:

Since the summer term 2021 due to the SARS-Cov-2 pandemic still is a very special one, we have decided to offer the course Audio/Visual Communications & Networks in a format that considers the possibility for as well students as lecturer and tutors to give and / or consume parts of the course online using webconference tools:

  • One unit per week will be devoted to a pre-announced chapter of the underlying 5GNR eBook.
  • The other units of the week based on a manuscript will be devoted to the mathematical background of the techniques introduced.

In case (parts of) the course will be offered online the used tool and dial-in information will be published on this course website.

Course Details

Introduction

The course will focus on 5G New Radio, which is the recently specified fifth generation cellular system.
All students have access to a recent 5GNR eBook (see Literature).

Audio/Visual Communications & Networks will focus on 5G since from a telecommunications perspective the combination of audio/visual data – meaning inherently high data rate and putting high requirements on the real-time capabilities of the underlying network – and wireless transmission – that is unreliable and highly dynamic with respect to the channel characteristics and its capacity – is the most demanding application domain.
The lecture will build on the foundation layed as well in „Signals and Systems / Signale und Systeme“ as in „Digital Transmission and Signal Processing“ and it will apply the building blocks introduced there. The course will aim at being self-contained, however, it will not be able to repeat basic mathematical concepts and tools introduced in „Digital Transmission and Signal Processing“.

The course will introduce the frequency bands available for 5G and their characteristics with respect to propagation, it will shed light on several multiple access (MA) schemes like TDMA, FDMA, OFDMA and SDMA and the corresponding duplex schemes TDD and FDD. A part of the course will be devoted to so called MIMO (multiple input multiple output systems), since the use of several phase- and amplitude-correlated antennas has boosted the data-rate of telecommunications systems.

Prerequisites

Audio/Visual Communications & Networks“ is a course during the main study period and by such requires a solid foundation of mathematics (differential and integral calculus) and probability theory. The course will build on the mathematical concepts and tools taught in „Digital Transmission and Signal Processing“ while trying to enable everyone to follow and to fill gaps by an accelerated study of the accompanying literature. „Signals and Systems“ as well as „Digital Transmission and Signal Processing“ are strongly recommended but not required.

Course Structure

Basic Rules

  • Please note that small changes and corrections will be applied to the lecture notes throughout the semester. If you find mistakes or have suggestions how to enhance the lecture notes we appreciate your input! 
  • Please don’t hesitate to tell us if you have any comments or suggestions related to lecture notes, task sheets, exercises or even organizational things. We will improve it soon so you can benefit from it, not only future students.
  • There will be weekly quizzes with 5 questions for 15 minutes every week on Tuesday from 12:15 – 12:30. These quizzes are graded individually and the points will be published online.

Lectures

  • Place: Campus C6. 3. Room: 9.05 (if possible; otherwise remotely via MS Teams)
  • Time: Tuesday 12:15 - 13:45  and Wednesday 08:30 - 10:00 (start April 13th)

Tutorial

  • Place: Campus C6. 3. Room: 9.05 (if possible; otherwise remotely via MS Teams)
  • Time: Wednesday 12:15 - 13:45

Exam Dates

  • The exams will be held as ORAL exams.
    We will schedule all exam slots on the two dates as given below. The exact time of each slot and how you can choose a certain slot will be announced during the lecture.
  • Main Exam - 27th - 28th July 2021
  • Re-Main Exam - 28th - 29th September 2021

Task Sheets

  • Task sheets are issued on Tuesdays after the lecture and are available online.
  • You do not have to submit the solutions, instead work on the tasks until the following tutorial.
  • During the tutorial you can solve the task sheet questions and get 1 point on every task you have contributed individually.

Correction

  • The quizzes and task sheets for this course will be divided into two parts (6 in each block respectively). It is necessary to pass both the blocks individually to be eligible for the exam.
  • Weekly Quizzes and Task Sheets:
    • Each weekly quiz is worth 5 points in total, which adds up to 30 points total for all quizzes in each block.
    • Each task sheet contains minimum 3 tasks, which adds up to 18 points total for all tasks in each block.
    • Final points are calculated by adding up over all quizzes and task sheets within a block.
    • You need minimum 19.2 (40%) points in total to pass a block and must pass both block A and B to be eligible for the exam.

MATLAB

  • Saarland University has a MATLAB campus license which can be used by all university students for non-commercial purposes.
  • The CIP pool at Saarland University provides access.
  • SSUM Signals and Systems Using Matlab package: a collection of demonstrations and exploratory applications for signal processing. It demonstrates extensively the concept of convolution, Fourier Analysis, FIR and IIR filters, modulation and much more. To use all examples the Matlab "Signal Processing Toolbox" is required (available in the CIP-room and included in Campus License).

Literature

Erik Dahlman, Stefan Parkvall, Johan Skold: "5G NR  : The Next Generation Wireless Access Technology", Elsevier Science & Technology, 2018. This book is available on: https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/sulb/detail.action?docID=5493036. You need to create an account: https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/auth/lib/sulb/login.action

Simon Haykin, Michael Moher: "Modern Wireless Communications", Prentice Hall, 2011

Additional Material

Aura Ganz, Zvi Ganz, Kitty Wongthavarawat: "Multimedia Wireless Networks - Technologies, Standards, and QoS", Prentice Hall, 2004

Matthew S. Gast: "802.11ac: A Survival Guide", O'Reilly, 2013

John G. Proakis, Masoud Salehi: "Communication Systems Engineering 2nd Edition", Prentice Hall, 2002

Ulrich Reimers: "Digital Video Broadcasting - The Family of International Standards for Digital Video Broadcasting", Springer, 2005

Claude E. Shannon, Warren Weaver: "The Mathematical Theory of Communication", University of Illinois Press, 1963

William Stallings: "Wireless Communications & Networks 2nd Edition", Prentice Hall, 2005

Introduction

Large-scale networks as the Internet are crucial for day-to-day communication and nowadays affect all areas of life. In parallel, near-field communication and personal area networks are becoming increasingly important for connecting the digital with the physical world and in particular an individual's health. Building and harnessing these communication systems requires in-depth understanding and practical experience on the concepts of networking as well as network programming and troubleshooting methods. Starting from the application layer, all important parts and components of networks are explained, down to some of the physical aspects of wired and wireless technology. Most importantly, these considerations are not only done in theory but are accompanied with hands-on labs, to apply the learned concepts in practical scenarios.

The Telecommunications Lab at Saarland University is offering this course to teach networking fundamentals to undergraduates, as these topics are not part of the mandatory curriculum in Computer Science Bachelor program.

Curriculum

The course covers four major areas, giving you practical and theoretical knowledge to create, maintain and advance network environments, which are essential for today's fully-connected world. The following questions (among others) will be answered in this course:

  • Foundations of Communication and Networking.
    • What are buffers and queues for, why do you need sequence numbers and what is the advantage of push over pull?
    • Why are forwarding and routing not the same and what makes a hub different from a switch?
  • Top-down Tour through the ISO/OSI Model.
    • How do applications, such as HTTP and Email, use the Internet as a communication infrastructure, e.g. using TCP or UDP connections?
    • How are packets forwarded across a cable, a sub-network and even across the Internet itself?
  • Designing and Troubleshooting Small Networks.
    • How to use WireShark for network analysis and GNS3 for network simulation?
    • How can I write my own firewall rules and fix misconfigurations in a network?
  • Development of Network Applications.
    • How to write server and client applications for the next exciting Internet application?
    • How to modify data streams to ensure reliable transmission over unreliable networks?

Organization

  • Credit Points: 6 (ungraded, except for Systems Engineering students)
  • Format: Lab (Praktikum)
  • Audience:
    • Bachelor Students (typically in 3rd semester or higher, highly motivated 1st semester are also welcome).
    • If you are a Master Student you can still participate, but as you might have attended the "Data Networks" core lecture or a similar course at another university, large parts of the theory we cover is not going to be new for you.
  • Schedule:
    • 2 weeks presence time (02. Aug. - 13. Aug. 2021)
      • Time: 8:30 - 15:00 (lunch break roughly 12:00 to 13:00 and shorter breaks as schedule permits)
      • Room: tbd
    • 2 weeks for implementing small networking projects (13. Aug. - 29. Aug. 2021)
    • a small exam on September 7th (re-exam September 29th)
      • Time: tbd
      • Room: tbd
    • All the dates can be found here (as soon as they are fixed).
  • Language:
    • Lectures, Slides, Task Sheets, etc. in English.
    • Some instructors and tutors speak German so no problem if you don't understand something (bei Problemen: Fragen!)
  • Requisites:
    • Enough motivation and drive for taking part in a short but intensive course with many new concepts.
    • No prior networking knowledge required.
    • Elementary programming skills required (e.g. Programmierung 2, Programmieren für Ingenieure).
    • Python skills are beneficial, but there will be tutorials on that.
    • This is not an open course, admission is needed (see below).

Admission

In order to ensure that you fulfill the requirements for this course and be able to keep with the fast pace, there is an admission test before the course starts. This is to ensure that you are not disappointed when putting a lot of effort (and free time in the semester break) into a course where you cannot keep up. Furthermore, this shows that you are dedicated and take the course seriously, which is needed for a short and intensive course as this one.

  • Date: We, July 21st 2021, 16:00
  • Place: E2.2 Günter-Hotz Lecture Hall
  • Duration: 30 minutes
  • Topics: Boolean Algebra, Bits and Bytes, Programming (a mock test can be found under materials)

Please register for this course if you want to take part in the admission. If you just stop by, there is NO guarantee that we have a booklet for you!