#48 What is the Syllabus,Booklist and Preparation strategy for Electrical Engineering Optional?

Electrical Engineering is a technical subject offered by upsc. It is the most demanding subject for the engineering graduate.The syllabus for this subject is vast and thus requires a lot of practise and revision.

What is the syllabus? What does the subject cover?


1.Circuit Theory

Circuit components; network graphs; KCL, KVL; circuit analysis methods: nodal analysis, mesh analysis; basic network theorems and applications; transient analysis: RL, RC and RLC circuits; sinusoidal steady-state analysis; resonant circuits; coupled circuits; balanced 3-phase circuits; Two-port networks.

2.Signals & Systems

Representation of continuous-time and discrete-time signals & systems; LTI systems; convolution; impulse response; time-domain analysis of LTI systems based on convolution and differential/difference equations. Fourier transform, Laplace transform, Z-transform, Transfer function. Sampling and recovery of signals DFT, FFT Processing of analog signals through discrete-time systems

3.E.M. Theory

Maxwell’s equations, wave propagation in bounded media. Boundary conditions, reflection, and refraction of plane waves. Transmission line: traveling and standing waves, impedance matching, Smith chart.

4.Analog Electronics

Characteristics and equivalent circuits (large and small-signal) of Diode, BJT, JFET, and MOSFET. Diode circuits: clipping, clamping, rectifier. Biasing and bias stability. FET amplifiers. Current mirror; Amplifiers: single and multi-stage, differential, operational, feedback, and power. Analysis of amplifiers; frequency response of amplifiers. OP AMP circuits. Filters; sinusoidal oscillators: criterion for oscillation; single-transistor and OP AMP configurations. Function generators and wave-shaping circuits. Linear and switching power supplies.

5.Digital Electronics

Boolean algebra; minimization of Boolean functions; logic gates; digital IC families (DTL, TTL, ECL, MOS, CMOS). Combinational circuits: arithmetic circuits, code converters, multiplexers, and decoders. Sequential circuits: latches and flip-flops, counters, and shift-registers. Comparators, timers, multivibrators. Sample and hold circuits, ADCs, and DACs. Semiconductor memories. Logic implementation using programmable devices (ROM, PLA, FPGA).

6.Energy Conversion

Principles of electromechanical energy conversion: Torque and emf in rotating machines. DC machines: characteristics and performance analysis; starting and speed control of motors; Transformers: principles of operation and analysis; regulation, efficiency; 3-phase transformers. 3-phase induction machines and synchronous machines: characteristics and performance analysis; speed control.

7.Power Electronics and Electric Drives

Semiconductor power devices: diode, transistor, thyristor, triac, GTO and MOSFET-static characteristics and principles of operation; triggering circuits; phase control rectifiers; bridge converters: fully-controlled and half-controlled; principles of thyristor choppers and inverters; DCDC converters; Switch mode inverter; basic concepts of speed control of dc and ac Motor drives applications of variable-speed drives.

8.Analog Communication

Random variables: continuous, discrete; probability, probability functions. Statistical averages; probability models; Random signals and noise: white noise, noise equivalent bandwidth; signal transmission with noise; a signal to noise ratio. Linear CW modulation: Amplitude modulation: DSB, DSB-SC, and SSB. Modulators and Demodulators; Phase and Frequency modulation: PM & FM signals; narrowband FM; generation & detection of FM and PM, Deemphasis, Preemphasis. CW modulation system: Superheterodyne receivers, AM receivers, communication receivers, FM receivers, phase-locked loop, SSB receiver Signal to noise ratio calculation for AM and FM receivers.


1.Control Systems

Elements of control systems; block-diagram representation; open-loop & closed-loop systems; principles and applications of feed-back. Control system components. LTI systems: time-domain and transform-domain analysis. Stability: Routh Hurwitz criterion, root-loci, Bode Plots and polar plots, Nyquist’s criterion; Design of lead-lag compensators. Proportional, PI, PID controllers. State variable representation and analysis of control systems.

2.Microprocessors and Microcomputers

PC organization; CPU, instruction set, register set, timing diagram, programming, interrupts, memory interfacing, I/O interfacing, programmable peripheral devices.

3.Measurement and Instrumentation

Error analysis; measurement of current, voltage, power, energy, power-factor, resistance, inductance, capacitance and frequency; bridge measurement. Signal conditioning circuit; Electronic measuring instruments: multimeter, CRO, digital voltmeter, frequency counter, Q-meter, spectrum-analyzer, distortion-meter. Transducers: thermocouple, thermistor, LVDT, strain-gauge, piezo-electric crystal.

4.Power Systems

Analysis and Control: Steady-state performance of overhead transmission lines and cables; principles of active and reactive power transfer and distribution; per-unit quantities; bus admittance and impedance matrices; load flow; voltage control and power factor correction; economic operation; symmetrical components, analysis of symmetrical and unsymmetrical faults. Concept of system stability: swing curves and equal area criterion. Static VAR system. Basic concepts of HVDC transmission.

5.Power System Protection

Principles of overcurrent, differential, and distance protection. Concept of solid-state relays. Circuit breakers. Computer-aided protection: Introduction; line bus, generator, transformer protection; numeric relays and application of DSP to protection.

6.Digital Communication

Pulse code modulation (PCM), differential pulse code modulation (DPCM), delta modulation (DM), Digital modulation and demodulation schemes: amplitude, phase, and frequency keying schemes (ASK, PSK, FSK). Error control coding: error detection and correction, linear block codes, convolution codes. Information measure and source coding. Data networks, 7-layer architecture.

How should one approach the subject? Who should take this subject?

This subject is only for those who are already well versed with the subject at graduation level. While other humanities subjects may find a decent overlap in the syllabus, the electrical engineering optional syllabus has no overlap with any GS or Essay paper. So, the time allotted for the preparation of the optional paper is for it alone. So,this subject clearly is not for the faint hearted.

To begin with,first understand the syllabus and demand. Refer to the previous year paper to know the kind of questions asked . 

What is the booklist for the subject?

  1. Electromagnetic Fields & Waves- Kd Prasad
  2. Energy Conversion: Ashfaq Hussain
  3. Circuit Theory: Analysis and Synthesis- A. Chakrabarti
  4. Signals and Systems-Alan V. Oppenheim, Alan V. Willsky, S. Hamid Nawab
  5. Physics of Semiconductor Devices – Simon Sze
  6. Analog Electronics: J.B. Gupta
  7. Digital Logic and Computer Design-M. Morris Mano
  8. Principles of Electronics – V .K. Mehta
  9. Radio Engineering – G.K. Mithal
  10. Circuit Analysis – Gupta Electrical Technology – Theraja
  11. Automatic Control System – Benjamin C. Kuo
  12. Elements of Engineering Electromagnetics – Nannapaneni Rao
  13. Electromagnetic Waves and Field – R.N. Singh
  14. Control Systems Engineering – Nagrath Gopal
  15. Semiconductor – Nag Choudhary
  16. Integrated Circuits – D. Roy Choudhary
  17. Network Analysis – Valkenburg
  18. Basic Current Analysis – Murthy
  19. Electromagnetic Waves and Radiating System – Jordan & Balmain
  20. Modern Central Engineering – Katsuhiko Ogata
  21. Microprocessors and Microcomputers- R. S Gaonkar
  22. Topics in Communication Theory – David Middleton

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *