I hope you all are fine; in my previous blog I have discussed some of the commonly asked questions by the engineering students and have tried to explain the misconceptions regarding the electrical engineering. I had had a huge response from the readers and thus I have decided to carry on the topic. In this article I will discuss the electronics engineering as a field of study. I will discuss the difference between the electronics and other areas of specialization of electrical engineering. I will also include the perks of electronics engineering and career direction of the electronics engineering. After reading the article the reader will be able to distinguish between the electronics engineering from other areas of expertise of electrical engineering and most probably will also help to choose the area of profession of his / her interest. So sit back, keep reading and enjoy the trip.
Introduction to Electronics Engineering:
Electronics engineering is considered as the subfield of the Electrical Engineering that is after studying the basic courses of the electrical engineering the students of electrical engineering can select the specialized courses (academic subjects) in order to become an electronics engineer. So it can be put like this that the electrical engineering and electronics shares almost all the basic courses and then special courses are offered which the students can select according to their interest. For instance as mentioned special courses lead to the electronics engineering and in a similar way other specialized courses lead to the power engineering which is also a subfield of electrical engineering, telecommunication and others. I will discuss later in the article about the courses or subjects of electronics engineering.
WHAT IS Electronics Engineering:
Thus the electronics engineering can be defined as the field of study in which the engineers use the electronic components such as PN diode, Zener Diode, Avalanche diode, Bipolar Junction Transistors, Field Effect Transistors, Operational Amplifiers, Thyristors, DIACs, amplifiers and filters topologies and other integrated circuits to design electronic circuits that perform different tasks. Electronics Engineers exploit their skills to design the circuits that use special electronic components and integrated circuits and design the systems that in addition to perform the basic task satisfy all the electrical constraints and are robust and can bear the harsh environments. Electronics engineering include the design and development of different consumer products as well as commercial and military products and systems. Electronics Engineering itself is a quite a vast field for example electronics engineering include high speed digital circuit design, analog circuit design, mixed signal circuit design, sensor interfacing and signal processing products design, control system design and development, instrumentation, robotics and a lot more thus electronic engineering itself is divided into the subfields which I will discuss later in the article.
History and Revolution of Electronics Engineering:
The electronics engineering has a rich history rather I should say the fascinating history. Early works in the field were related to telegraph industry the modern form of electronic engineering actually emerged from the design and development of radio, telephone and television equipment. Electronic engineering was referred to as radio engineering and it was 1950s after which the term electronic engineering was coined.
Early electronic systems and electronic computers were based on the Vacuum Tubes many amplifiers were developed using the Vacuum Tubes. Vacuum Tubes allow the current to flow in one direction and opposes in the other direction that is vacuum tube has operation quite similar to the modern electronic component called diode. Later triode was invented by modifying the Vacuum tube which was employed in amplifiers and performed the function similar to the modern electronic component transistor. But the Vacuum tube and Triode used to consume a lot of power. Remarkable revolution in the electronics was marked by the invention of the transistor. As mentioned in my previous article that the Transistor was invented in 1947 by three engineers at Bell Labs. The first transistor was point-contact transistor made out of semiconductor material. A year later more commonly known Bipolar Junction Transistor was invented by same scientists and then first Integrated Circuit was developed at Texas Instrument by Jack Killby. These electronic devices / components were made of semiconductor material and consumed considerably less power compared to older components. Then the electronics industry made progress by leaps and bound thus has to be subdivided into subcategorize.
Braches of Electronics Engineering:
As mentioned earlier that the electronics engineering is a subfield of electrical engineering which is further divided into subcategories. Some of the popular branches of electronics engineering are:
- Analogic Electronics.
- Digital Electronics.
- Consumer Electronics.
- Industrial Electronics.
- Embedded Systems.
- Power Electronics.
- Radio engineering.
- Control Systems.
- System Engineering.
- Computer Engineering.
- Instrumentation Engineering.
- Signal Processing.
Each branch of electronics is categorized on the basis of the applications for which the circuits are designed. For example in power electronics circuits are designed for controlling and converting the power. In instrumentation engineering circuit are designed that are employed for measuring and manipulating the physical quantities. The circuit design principles and techniques may be different among different branches of electronics engineering but the common thing is that the electronics components and integrated circuits are employed in all areas of electronics engineering.
Skillsets of Electronics Engineers:
Electronics engineering is a quite challenging field and the engineers must have to keep their knowledge up to date with the rapidly changing technological trends. A lot of engineering students had asked me the question regarding jobs, scope, pay scale and skillsets of an electronics engineer. I will include the pay scale and jobs later fist I would like to discuss the skillsets required to be the good electronics engineer.
Analog Circuit Design:
A good electronic engineer must have the sound knowledge on analog circuit design. He / she must have the in depth understanding on the electronic principles and techniques employed for designing the electronic circuit.
Believe it or not! The datasheet reading is an art and those who know what to see in the datasheet always stand apart among other engineers. While designing the electronic circuit the electronic engineer encounters the situation in which he / she have to decide what to do with the component, how much input current can be applied, how much output current can be drawn, which frequency to select the answer to all these questions and other like these are in datasheet and the electronics engineer must learn how to read the datasheet effectively.
As the technology is making progress the need to develop more and more skills have increased more than ever before. The electronics engineer should know the some if not all the electrical artifacts of the digital electronics.
Embedded Hardware design:
A good electronics engineer must have skills to develop the products on his own for this he / she should know the embedded hardware design techniques, which includes signal conditioning required, glue logic required and many more.
While designing the electronic circuit the most time taking and tedious task is to select the most suitable electronic component for the electronic circuit. The engineers have to compare the electrical characteristics of one component over another and have to select the component quite wisely. The electronics engineer must know to select the electronic component that is most suitable for the circuit.
As I mentioned in the article on electrical engineering that the background in the programming languages will help boost the career of the electrical engineer. In electronics engineering the companies expect the engineer to have the sound knowledge of programming languages as engineer might have to be involved in product development.
Hardware Description Language:
The hardware description language such as VHDL and VERILOG are modern ways of describing the digital circuits. Now the softwares have been developed which converts the HDL code into the bit string which is used to configure the FPGAs and PLDs. So it is good that the electronics engineer have the understanding of the Hardware Description Languages.
As far as the scope of the electronics engineering is concerned I would like to say that the good electronics engineer have a quite a good scope in the field. So be technically strong if you are willing to choose electronics engineering as a profession.
Electronics Engineering Jobs:
Electronics engineer according to his / her expertise and skills can find jobs in a lot of departments. Some of the common job opportunities for the Electronics Engineers are:
- Electronics engineer with specialization in analog electronics can find job in hardware design companies where their responsibilities might be design the filters are amplifiers for particular application.
- Electronics engineer with expertise in digital design can find job opportunities in embedded hardware design companies where he / she needs to select components and design schematics according to the hardware specifications.
- Electronics Engineer with skills in embedded firmware development can find jobs in embedded system design companies where his / her responsibilities are to write codes for the processors or controllers.
- Senior Electronics Engineer can build the career in project management.
- Electronics engineer with skills in high speed digital design can find jobs in embedded hardware design companies.
Electronics Engineer Salary:
The most frequently asked questions by the engineers seeking career in electronics engineering is how much the electronics engineer can earn. So simple is that the pay scale of the electronics engineer depends on his / her qualification and experience. This point should not missed here that no matter how much you are technically strong if you are not able to efficiently express yourself to your recruiter you will always be underpaid. So besides grooming yourself technically one should improve the communication skills.
- The fresher in electronics engineering can earn up to 6000 dollars per annum.
- As the experience grows and electronics engineer mark his / her abilities the earning grows exponentially.
- The senior electronics engineer can earn up to 30,000 dollars.
- Moreover if you are able to work part time besides the job then you can make good lump sum.
I hope this article would be helpful for you, I have discussed some of the frequently asked questions regarding electronics engineering and I have also tried to settle some doubts of students. That is all for now, in the next article I will come up with more interesting engineering topics, till then stay connected, keep reading and enjoy learning.