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ELEC3227 Embedded Networked Systems

Module Overview

With rapid popularity and advancements in technologies like the internet-of-things (IoT) and network-on-chip (NoC), the ability to connect and network embedded devices is becoming ever more commonplace, and a feature of most electronic devices. This module is concerned with how electronic and computing devices can network with one-another. The module is not deeply concerned with physical layer communications, e.g. modulating signals onto carriers, as students already have a solid background in this from modules in previous years. The module explores the structure and purpose of layers in protocol stacks, through to example protocols (such as Bluetooth, LoRaWAN, ZigBee) and security implications of networking approaches and appropriate countermeasures. A key part of the module is the coursework, in which students design and implement their own network protocol(s) in hardware.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

- To provide an introduction to modern computer networks and IoT technologies - To understand and describe network architectures and principles - To understand and describe the components and layers of typical protocol stacks - To understand and describe networking security issues - To give experience in designing and building embedded networked devices - To expose students to networking standards.

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • The principles of layered networking models
  • Architectures and protocols which enable embedded networking
  • Issues regarding the security of embedded networks
  • The impact of protocol design on energy-consumption and energy-efficiency
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Balance the trade-offs between performance and efficiency in networking protocols
  • Select appropriate protocols to meet application/QoS requirements
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Interpret standardisation documents
  • Communicate your technical work
Subject Specific Practical Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Design, implement and test embedded networking protocols on practical hardware

Syllabus

Network architectures and principles Physical networks and their design Layered networking models: - Data link layer principles and protocols - Network layer principles and protocols - Transport layer principles and protocols - Application layer principles and protocols Example network protocols and architectures (e.g. Bluetooth, ZigBee, LoRa/LoRaWAN, TCP/IP) Network-on-chip protocols Energy and power efficiency Network security Emerging network technologies Standardisation of communication protocols

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Syllabus material will be taught through the lectures and supporting tutorials. Learning will be through a combination of independent study alongside the taught sessions, the coursework and lab activities.

TypeHours
Follow-up work12
Wider reading or practice59
Revision10
Lecture24
Preparation for scheduled sessions12
Completion of assessment task21
Tutorial12
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Andrew S. Tanenbaum, David J. Wetherall. (2011). Computer Networks. 

Assessment

Assessment Strategy

Laboratory sessions are scheduled in the labs on level 2 of the Zepler building. Length of each session: 3 hours Number of sessions completed by each student: 3 Max number of students per session: unlimited Demonstrator:student ratio: 1:12 Preferred teaching weeks: 3 to 5

Summative

MethodPercentage contribution
Coursework 40%
Examination 60%

Repeat

MethodPercentage contribution
Examination 100%

Referral

MethodPercentage contribution
Examination 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Linked modules

Pre-requisites: ELEC1201

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