Télécom ParisTech

Communication Devices and Systems (SOCOM)

Due to the concept of “anytime, anywhere, anydevice” common to the new usages of telecommunications, communication systems and particularly the related technologies will have to rise to numerous challenges. These challenges will includevery high data rates for wireless communications, ultra-high data rates for optical communications, enhanced mobility and nomadism, diversity of applications and their inherent constraints. Meeting the abovechallenges will require understanding and mastering a very wide range of technologies and tools in Engineering, Physics and Mathematics.

In this context, the "Communication Devices and Systems" track brings a global and exhaustive understanding of the physical layer of communication networks both from a theoretical and experimental point of view. After having completed this track, the student will be able:

• to identify the specificities of a communication system

• to analyze the technical and theoretical limits of such a system

• to design a communication system in accordance with specifications

• to understand the impacts of the physical layer on the upper layers of a communication network

More precisely, during the second year, information theory, digital communications, optical communications, antennas and wireless communication electronics systems will be studied. In addition, the interrelation between these domains will be covered in order to provide an end-to-end view of a communication network.

During the third year, students will have the opportunity to specialize in one of the fields listed above.

2nd year courses

SOCOM 2nd year program
(192 hours)


Fall semester Spring semester
Period 1 Period 2 Period 3 Period 4
 A1 slot SOCOM202 Microwave Engineering For the Internet of Things and Systems SOCOM203 Digital Communications Theory SOCOM206 Communication systems lab sessions SOCOM208 Communication systems case studies
 A2 slot SOCOM201 Communicating SoCs SOCOM204 Optical communications SOCOM205 Coding and Information Theory SOCOM207 Access and planning

Details :

Fall semester, period 1

  • SOCOM 201 Communicating SoCs (24 hrs) Patricia Desgreys
    The purpose of this module is to introduce the concepts, architectures and basic components for front-end RF transceivers. Essential analog functions are identified and studied in detail: RF components, frequency synthesis, and A-to-D & D-to-A conversions. At the end of this course, the student will be familiar with the main blocks of RF electronics, how they operate, their main limitations (distortion, noise) and their impact on the performance of an RF chain. Moreover, the student will know how to implement the functions phase locked loop (PLL) and conversion in a broader context of analog and mixed signal (AMS) information processing. The strengths of this course are to start at system level for RF architectures and from design specifications to gradually understand the constraints to be distributed on the key elements of receiver architecture.
  • SOCOM 202 Microwave Engineering For the Internet of Things and Systems (24 hrs) Eric Bergeault
    During this course, the future engineer will develop skills and acquire knowledge on the fundamentals of designing and building antennas and circuits for radiofrequency (RF) and microwave communication systems. The range of applications is wide and it covers high data rate systems such as WLAN or LTE, low data rates used for the Internet of Things, as well as localization for RADAR and RFID, and space communication for satellites. The current development towards the millimeter wave domain for 5G mobile communication systems and the high integration level of the components are tomorrow’s key challenges. To innovate and fulfill the increasing demand, it is essential to optimize the architecture of the system and all functions on both the transmitter and receiver sides (power amplifier, low-noise amplifiers, oscillators, mixers, antennas, transmission lines…) and to evaluate performance at the system level. The significant parameters are data rate, power level, noise level, power consumption, linearity as well as size and mass. After having completed this course, the student will be able to define the specifications of communication systems and to evaluate their performance, in particular in the context of connected devices.

Fall semester, period 2

  • SOCOM 203 Digital Communications Theory (24 hrs) Philippe Ciblat
    The goal of this course is to provide current technologies and methodologies for modulating information and decoding information employed in systems such as 4G, Wifi, DVBT, ADSL, etc. This course introduces a unified view of transmission issues and related solutions. From a theoretical point of view, the random-processes theory and optimization theory will be intensively used.  From a practical point of view, the course enables you to understand i) how to design the physical layer of a wireless system, ii) the emerging technologies employed in future systems (5G, D2D, etc.) 
  • SOCOM 204 Optical communications (24 hrs) Renaud Gabet
    Today, the transmission of information by optical means has become standard technology with numerous applications ranging from wireless transmission over small distances (TV remote) to fiber transmission over long-haul distances at an ultra-high data rate (digital data transfer). It involves a large number of concepts, devices and scaling issues the understanding of which requires a good knowledge of optics and optoelectronics, often associated with a substantial background in digital communications or microwave engineering. The "Optical communications" teaching unit deals with the generation, modulation, propagation, processing and detection of optical signals.

Spring semester, period 3

  • SOCOM 205 Coding and Information Theory (24 hrs) Jean-Claude Belfiore
    In this course, we introduce the main tools and results of coding and information theory. More precisely, we introduce notions of entropy, divergence and mutual information. Then we prove and discuss two of Shannon’s theorems dealing with data compression and channel transmission. Applications of both theorems will be provided. Finally practical coding schemes will be given and analyzed.
  • SOCOM 206 Communication systems lab sessions (24 hrs) Bernard Huyart
    This course offers a practical approach to the field of communication systems, focusing on wired, optical or radiofrequency communication system design. It is mostly based on lab sessions, in which the students will build on the concepts introduced in the theoretical courses of the “Communication devices & systems” track. The course is also dedicated to students who do not plan to specialize in the field of communication systems but wish to acquire general concepts & knowledge through an experimental approach.

Spring semester, period 4

  • SOCOM 207 Access and planning (24 hrs) Marceau Coupechoux
    This UE deals with issues related to access and planning of wireless networks. The following aspects will be addressed: - Cellular concept, mobility, hand over - Planning of cellular networks: link budget, frequency reuse, traffic - Example of MAC protocol with competition: CSMA/CA (WiFi) - MAC protocols without competition: CDMA, OFDMA.
  • SOCOM 208 Communication systems case studies (24 hrs) Didier Erasme
    This course relies on the scientific material studied in all the previous teaching units of the SOCOM Track. It illustrates how the basic principles in each course are applied in real communication systems. The interrelations between components, devices, transmission systems, communication techniques and network architectures are highlighted. Examples of systems presented will be biomedical, MANET, PON, optical coherent systems, RF and millimetric networks LTE, Satellites. A project requiring modelling and simulation work will take place in the second half of the unit.

3rd year options

  • Students choose a specialization and a 6-month engineering internship. The internship can be during the first semester or the second semester.

 They may:

  • choose one of the  specializations offered by the school, (they take courses and a Research and Innovation Project during one semester).

-       Applications des micro-ondes aux radars et aux télécommunications (2nd semester courses)

-       Electronique RF  (first semester courses)

-       Communications numériques télécommunications (2nd semester courses)

  • apply for one of the University Master degrees

 - of the University of Paris Saclay,in the electrical Engineering  field : CAT  Composants et Antennes pour les Télécoms

    •  ICS  Integration Circuits ans Systems
    •  ROSP  Optical Networks and Photonic System

- of University Pierre et Marie Curie (UPMC), in the electrical engineering   field :

    • STN  Systèmes et réseaux de Télécommunications Numériques

  • Similar programs may be possible abroad.