Radio Systems Engineering, Revised First Edition

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Bradley Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech in association with Virginia Tech Publishing and the Open Education Initiative at the University Libraries at Virginia Tech.


Using a systems framework, this textbook provides a clear and comprehensive introduction to the performance, analysis, and design of radio systems for students and practicing engineers. Presented within a consistent framework, the first part of the book describes the fundamentals of the subject: propagation, noise, antennas, and modulation. The analysis and design of radios including RF circuit design and signal processing is covered in the second half of the book.

Key features

  • Numerous examples within the text involve realistic analysis and design activities, and emphasize how practical experiences may differ from theory or taught procedures.
  • RF circuit design and analysis is presented with minimal involvement of Smith charts, enabling students to more readily grasp the fundamentals.
  • Both traditional and software-defined/direct sampling technology are described with pros and cons of each strategy explained.
  • 517 pages. Licensed CC BY NC 4.0.

"This textbook gives engineering students a complete overview of radio systems and provides practicing wireless engineers with a convenient comprehensive reference." Patrick Roblin, Ohio State University

Radio Systems Engineering, Revised First Edition was previously published by Cambridge University Press (2016) ISBN 9781107068285. This version is © Steven W. Ellingson and has been lightly updated to correct known errata, minor issues with text and figures, and to present examples in color highlight boxes and some figures in color. It is made freely available and under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial International License (CC BY NC 4.0).

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How to access the book
The main landing page for this book is
The open textbook is freely available online in multiple formats including PDF and HTML [forthcoming].
A paperback print version (in color) is available for order here.

ISBN (PDF): 978-1-957213-76-7
ISBN (HTML): 978-1-957213-77-4 (accessible version forthcoming)
ISBN (print): 978-1-957213-75-0

Table of contents
Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Antenna Fundamentals
Chapter 3: Propagation
Chapter 4: Noise
Chapter 5: Analog Modulation
Chapter 6: Digital Modulation
Chapter 7: Radio Link Analysis
Chapter 8: Two-Port Concepts
Chapter 9: Impedance Matching
Chapter 10: Amplifiers
Chapter 11: Linearity, Multistage Analysis, and Dynamic Range
Chapter 12: Antenna Integration
Chapter 13: Analog Filters & Multiplexers
Chapter 14: Frequency and Quadrature Conversion in the Analog Domain
Chapter 15: Receivers
Chapter 16: Frequency Synthesis
Chapter 17: Transmitters
Chapter 18: Digital Implementation of Radio Functions
Appendix A: Empirical Modeling of Mean Path Loss
Appendix B: Characteristics of Some Common Radio Systems

About the author
Dr. Steven W. Ellingson
Steven W. Ellingson is an Associate Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech. He received the Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from the Ohio State University. He held senior engineering positions at Booz-Allen & Hamilton, Raytheon, and the Ohio State University ElectroScience Laboratory before joining the faculty of Virginia Tech. His research is in the areas of antennas and propagation, applied signal processing, and radio frequency instrumentation, with funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and the commercial communications and aerospace industries. Dr. Ellingson serves as a consultant to industry and government on topics pertaining to radio frequency systems.

Project support
Support for editorial work, accessibility, publication assistance, and project management was provided by the Open Education Initiative of the University Libraries at Virginia Tech.

Suggested citation
Ellingson, Steven W. (2023). Radio Systems Engineering, Revised First Edition. Virginia Tech Publishing: Blacksburg. Licensed with CC BY NC 4.0.

Errata and error reporting
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Cover image: © Vallefrias. Used under license from Adobe.
Cover design: Kindred Grey



radio systems, antenna