Microwave Circuits and Systems

Key information

Start date: To be confirmed

Attendance dates:

To be confirmed

Time commitment: 5 days


Manor Park campus, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey GU2 7YW

Contact details:


This course provides an introduction to the essential principles of radio frequency (RF) and microwave engineering, giving particular attention to printed circuits and guided wave transmission. To supplement the theory covered in lectures, there will be invited presentations from industry that will put the theory into the context of current industrial practice. Practical and simulated laboratory sessions are also included in the course to supplement the lectures.

Good course with balanced tutorials… ADS Lab was very good... Detailed content.

Comment from previous student

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • Explain the difference between lumped and distributed microwave circuits as well as the different mathematical approaches used to design them.
  • Recognise passive components commonly used in microwave engineering.
  • Be able to design and analyse circuits containing the passive components most commonly used in microwave engineering.
  • Apply S-parameters as well as the Smith chart in the analysis and design of passive microwave circuits, such as matching networks.

Course content

Please note that we reserve the right to alter the syllabus. Any major changes will be notified to delegates before the course starts.

9am - 12:30pm (break included) - Microstrip transmission lines and stub matching 1 and 2
Dr Peter Aaen

Microstrip line design, reflection coefficient, S-parameters, Smith chart, stub matching.

1:30pm - 3pm - Printed microwave components
Dr Peter Aaen

Quarter wave matching circuit, transformers, Wilkinson combiners, couplers (hybrid, rat-race, directional, lange), circulators

3:30pm - 5pm - Microwave transmission
Dr Tim Brown

Propagation of electromagnetic waves through material including propagation constant, wave number, attenuation constant dielectric constant and loss tangent. Types of transmission lines, phase velocity, group delay, dispersion. Brief overview of Maxwell’s equations, boundary conditions and skin depth.

5pm - 6:30pm (break included) - Lab work: ADS microstrip design
Dr Peter Aaen

9am - 12:30pm (break included) - Waveguides 1 and 2
Dr Tim Brown

Principles of propagation in rectangular and circular waveguides. Phase velocity and group delay in waveguides, cut off frequencies. Evanescent modes, waveguide modes. Applications of waveguides.

1:30pm - 5pm (break included) - Microwave measurements 1 and 2
Professor Nick Ridler

Measurement of: Impedance, power, attenuation, noise, mismatch corrections, accuracy and uncertainty, vector network analyser (VNA) basics, cables and connectors, calibration methods, calibration in coaxial line, calibration on-wafer, extended VNA practical session – calibration; measurement; verification.

5pm - 6:30pm (break included) - Lab work: Waveguide demonstrator
Dr Tim Brown

9am - 10:30am - Microwave antennas
Dr Tim Brown

Basics of antenna theory: Directivity, gain, impedance and effective area. Types of microwave antenna: Horn antennas and planar antennas.

11am - 12:30pm - Microwave semiconductors
Dr Rob Davis

Doping, semiconductor transport, comparison of key semiconductor properties, the p-n junction, band diagrams, the Schottky diode, MESFET and HEMTs, bipolar transistors, device characteristics, frequency response and equivalent circuits, enhancement and depletion mode FET integration, bipolar and FET integration. Wideband gap materials and devices: SiC and GaN. Device limitations: Noise, linearity and dynamic effects.

1:30pm - 3pm - MMICs
Dr Rob Davis

Introduction to monolithic microwave integrated circuits (MMICs), examples of typical applications, overview of process technology, device modelling, process design kits, designing your components, thermal design, using a foundry, process control and wafer acceptance.

3:30pm - 5pm - PIN diodes and phase shifters
Dr Peter Aaen

Operation of PIN diodes and switch circuits. Switched and loaded line phase shifters, reflection type phase shifters.

5pm - 6:30pm (break included) - Lab work: CST antenna lab
Prof Mike Underhill

9am - 10:30am - Microwave amplifiers
Dr Peter Aaen

Microwave FETs, relative merits of FETs and BJTs. Device and circuit linearity, harmonic and intermodulation distortion, concept of third order intercept.

11am - 12:30pm - Multiphysics microwave simulation and characterisation
Dr Peter Aaen

1:30pm - 5pm - Microwave oscillator concepts 1 and 2
Professor Mike Underhill

High frequency transistors and oscillator design. Phase noise characteristics. Oscillations using IMPATT and Gunn diodes.

5pm - 6pm - History of high power devices and magnetrons
Dr Peter Aaen

Tubes, Travelling wave tube amplifiers (TWTAs), klystrons. Structure and operational principles of the magnetron.

6:45pm - Complementary course dinner
At the Rumwong Thai restaurant (subject to numbers).

9am - 10:30am - Millimetre wave propagation
Dr Tim Brown

Fundamentals of propagation, propagation issues at microwave bands. Applications in packet microwave wireless backhauls.

11am - 12:30pm - High frequency MCMs
Quentin Reynolds

Definition of multi-chip modules (MCMs). Advantages, properties and types of MCM. Filter design examples. Assembly techniques, wire bonding and flip chip. Costing issues.

1:30pm - 3pm - Tutorial
Dr Tim Brown and Dr Peter Aaen

Learning and teaching methods

Learning and teaching methods include the following:

  • Lectures
  • Tutorials.


There is no assessment for those who take this as an individual short course.

Course leader

Tim Brown profile image

Dr Tim Brown

Senior Lecturer in RF Antennas and Propagation

Entry requirements

There are no prerequisites required to do this course.

Recognition of prior learning

This course will require only a minimum level of previous RF knowledge though some grounding in mathematics including matrix algebra, parabolic equations and some calculus will be desirable.

Fees and funding

Price per person:


Non IET members: Early bird rate*


IET members: Early bird rate*


Non IET members: Standard rate


IET members: Standard rate

* Early bird rate available up to one month before the course start date

What these fees include

Lunch, refreshments and course notes which will be provided on USB sticks and on Dropbox.

How to apply

Payment can be accepted by purchase order, credit card or bank transfer on our online store.

Please note that we do not charge VAT as we are an educational establishment.

Payments will be accepted subject to availability. If making payment by credit card, please forward the transaction receipt by email to Barbara Steel.

Register your interest

Terms and conditions

When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations and our terms and conditions. You are also confirming you have read and understood our privacy notice.

  • Cancellations notified in writing ten working days before the event; we charge a cancellation fee of 35 per cent of the standard rate. If we have already received payment we refund 65 per cent of the full fee.
  • Cancellations within 10 working days before the event; We charge these at the full rate and do not give refunds.
  • If no written notice of cancellation is received, no refund can be made.
  • The University of Surrey reserves the right to cancel any event. In this case, the full fee will be refunded unless a mutually convenient transfer can be arranged. Details of event changes or cancellations are available by phoning +44 (0)1483 686040.
  • Delegates can make a provisional registration for a course by telephone or email. However bookings are only acknowledged formally once payment has been received.
  • Substitutions from the same company may be made following consultation with the Continuing Education Manager.
  • The University reserves the right to cancel any course on the grounds of insufficient numbers or for other reasons beyond our control. In this case the full fee will be refunded unless a mutually convenient transfer can be arranged.
  • Registrations cannot be accepted without a valid purchase order, credit card payment or cheque.
  • Proof of payment.
  • Registrations must come with a valid purchase order, credit card payment or cheque.


This online prospectus has been prepared and published in advance of the commencement of the course. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a course with us. Read more.