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  • Writer's pictureLeonardo

Learn Electrical Engineering with Vult

Over the past six months I have been working on developing an Electrical Engineering course for the Wolfram U platform. Wolfram U offers free courses on topics like, mathematics, modeling and simulation, machine learning, data science etc. If you are interested on those topics I would recommend you to check the page because there are many interesting courses.

About the course

I created this course because, despite the abundance of materials available for learning electrical engineering, I felt I could present the topics in a more logical and understandable way. For example, most circuits using operational amplifiers (op-amps) rely heavily on the concept of feedback. However, many books on op-amps don’t adequately explain feedback, since they assume that you have learned it in other courses. When I first learned about op-amps in university, I was taught the different configurations and their applications. It wasn’t until later that I truly understood the fundamental principles behind their operation.

My goal is to guide students step-by-step, introducing ideas gradually and building knowledge so that each subsequent topic is easier to grasp. While I’m not sure if I’ve fully succeeded in creating an easy-to-follow course, I have put in a lot of effort to make it comprehensive.

The course is called "Introduction to Electric Circuits." Despite the word "Introduction," it is not basic since covers a wide range of topics and is very thorough. However, there are a few topics I intentionally left out.

Here’s an overview of the course structure:

The first part of the course is somewhat unconventional. I start with the RC circuit, a simple circuit consisting of a resistor (R) and a capacitor (C). The idea is to build a mental model for students, helping them develop an intuitive understanding of how these basic components work and how they can be used.

After analyzing the RC circuit, I revert to a more traditional sequence of topics. I cover the fundamentals, such as current, voltage, and power. Once the basics are covered, I move on to analysis methods, which are foundational for creating simulators like System Modeler, the one I work on developing.

The last and longest part of the course focuses on operational amplifiers. As mentioned earlier, I take time to slowly build up the understanding of their different configurations and how they function.

In between the various op-amp lessons, I showcase some applications. Since I’m interested in synthesizers, most of the applications are circuits I’ve built for my Eurorack system.

At this point, I introduce the "integrator" circuit. This is where things get very interesting, at least for me. Integrators are basic components that make possible simulating (executing or solving) differential equations using electrical components. If we can simulate differential equations, we essentially have an "analog computer." Analog computers are fascinating for solving problems and are closely related to analog synthesizers.

I conclude the course by showing how to build modules like Voltage Controlled Oscillators (VCOs), Voltage Controlled Filters (VCFs), and Voltage Controlled Amplifiers (VCAs), which are the basic building blocks of synthesizers. All these blocks use the concepts and ideas that the student has learned during the course.

There are several topics I left out of this course. Perhaps the most significant omission is the detailed coverage of semiconductors like transistors and diodes. Even though these devices are fundamental to integrated circuits, I believe it’s possible to create a wide variety of interesting circuits primarily using integrated circuits.

Where to find the course

If you are interested on taking this course there will be two options. The first is to join the online study group from June 24 to July 12. During the study group, over a period of two weeks, we will show the recorded videos and we will be available to answer any of your questions.

After the study group is over, the course will be available for watching at your own pace in the Wolfram U site.

If you would like to register to the study group follow THIS LINK.

If you didn't catch the study group, the course will be available at the Wolfram U page some time later.

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