Essentials of Electronic Technology

Course Length:



Electronic technology has rapidly worked its way into a diverse array of applications. In this three-day course you will learn new insights and timely information on circuit functions and their components, computer memory, processors, communication gear, and related technologies. Our course instructor clearly explains key concepts, offers examples, and provides many opportunities for actual practice and use of electronics essentials. From this newly gained knowledge, you can work better with EE information, handle customer questions with more background, and work out legal issues with stronger knowledge.

The course is intended for professionals with limited or no prior knowledge or experience in electronics. People who will benefit from the course include those in management and design; purchasing and legal departments, quality control, sales, and non-electrical engineering & manufacturing as well as anyone who desires to have a better grasp of electronics. From capacitors, inductors, and resistors to computers and fiber optic communication devices, this course gives the essential information you need to know about electronics. Those who combine knowledge about electronics with their professional expertise become invaluable assets to their organization.

What you will learn:

  • Basic concepts of electrons, atoms, and molecules
  • How electrical circuits function using voltage, circuit pathways, and impedance loads
  • The functions of resistance and inductance in electrical circuits
  • What is capacitance and why does it function directly opposite to inductance in electrical circuits
  • Basic electronic devices – transistors, diodes, FETs, and all other basic devices
  • Integrated Circuits – logic device, analog devices, FPGAs, CPLDs, and many other devices that are used in your handheld and cell phones
  • Digital Circuits – logic gates, ICs, concepts of Boolean algebra

Course Outline:


  • The science of electricity and electronics–matter, atoms, molecules, electrons, protons, neutrons, voltage, and current


  • How a circuit uses electricity
  • The four key elements of a circuit: source, load, pathway, and switch
  • Measuring the four elements of electrical circuits using volt meters, ammeters, ohmmeters, watt meters (using Watt’s law)
  • Controlling the flow of electricity on a circuit: potentiometers, switches, variable resistors
  • Two kinds of circuits: series and parallel circuits


  • Figuring out the amps/current, ohms/resistance, and voltage in a circuit: Ohm’s law and Kirchhoff’s laws
  • Using resistors to limit the current to a specified amount through the circuit
  • Using inductors to oppose changes in currents to provide control over the rate of circuit activation
  • Two kinds of inductance: serial and parallel
  • What happens in a circuit when current is changing? Transient response
  • Changing the voltage and the current in a circuit: transformers
  • How power is consumed by resistors (Real power: watts) and how power is absorbed, stored and released by inductors (Reactive power: volt amps)
  • The importance of the power factor
  • How to figure out the power factor from the inductance and resistance
  • Trying to get the power factor lower: balancing inductive loads
  • The biggest hurdle in making circuits go faster: the inductance
  • The importance and properties of time constant and inductance in high-speed circuits


  • What is a capacitor? How is it different from an inductor?
  • Types of capacitors: Aluminum electrolytic, ceramic, tantalum, mica, polystyrene, polarized, variable, and others.
  • The time required to charge a capacitor: RC Time Constant
  • Equivalent capacitance in series and parallel circuits
  • What happens in a capacitor when currents change? Transient response
  • Reactive power in capacitors
  • Capacitance issues in today’s printed circuit boards and why capacitance must be controlled in high speed operation of microprocessors, RAMs, FPGAs, etc.


  • The difference between analog and digital circuits
  • Why do computers use almost exclusively digital circuits?
  • What are silicon devices? How are they laid out?
  • Basic silicon devices: diodes, transistors, and FETs
  • How silicon devices are constructed: doping, P-N junction, layout.


  • What is an integrated circuit?
  • How are integrated circuits constructed?
  • Common types of infrastructures for integrated circuits: MOS devices, CMOS, NMOS, PMOS. Examples of these devices for constructing PLDs and PLAs.
  • Which types of integrated circuits are most popular in today’s electronic products and why?
  • How do integrated circuits work?
  • What are the methods for constructing amplifiers and linear integrated circuits?
  • Using NPN and PNP transistors; how to bias amplifiers and linear integrated circuits to make them function; deciding how you want the amplifier to operate; and working to get a specified voltage and current gain.


  • What are digital circuits?
  • Using binary numbering systems employed by all digital circuits
  • Basic elements of digital information: bits and bytes
  • The basic elements of digital circuits: Logic gates
  • Types of Logic gates: OR, NOR, AND, NAND, XOR.
  • Flip flops: combinations of logic gates which provide the basic building blocks for RAMs and PROMs
  • The two types of flip-flops: D and JK


  • History of Computers
  • Microprocessors and mini-computers: What are the fastest ones?
  • How a computer works
  • How does the memory work (RAMs and PROMs)? Which are the fastest?
  • How is programming for ROMs, PROMs, EPROMs, EEPROMs, and flash RAM done?
  • What are RDRAMs and double density clocking? How fast can they operate? What type of RAMs and PROMs will be used in the future?
  • Storage technologies used in computers
  • LEDs and LCD flat panel displays
  • Why is Moore’s Law (that every 18 months the speed of computers will double) no longer a law?


REGISTRATION:  There is no obligation or payment required to enter the Registration for an actively scheduled course.   We understand that you may need approvals but please register as early as possible or contact us so we know of your interest in this course offering.

SCHEDULING:  If this course is not on the current schedule of open enrollment courses and you are interested in attending this or another course as an open enrollment, please contact us at (410)956-8805 or Please indicate the course name, number of students who wish to participate. and a preferred time frame. ATI typically schedules open enrollment courses with a 3-5 month lead-time.   To express your interest in an open enrollment course not on our current schedule, please email us at

For on-site pricing, you can use the request an on-site quote form, call us at (410)956-8805, or email us at




  • Robert Hanson, MSEE has unmatched experience in teaching and knowledge of electronics. As a Testability Overseer for Boeing Commercial Airline products, Mr. Hanson has worked with non-EEs and EE’s. His over 40 years of work experience in the design manufacturing and testing areas have enabled him to consult and train both nationally and internationally. As a digital design engineer at The Boeing Company, Rockwell, Honeywell, and Loral, Mr. Hanson designed and provided prototype operational analysis on many high-speed designs, including PCBs for AWACs, B1-B, 747-400, missiles, and ground support test equipment. He has played a very active role in automating the line, implementing robotics and participating in produciblity studies, and working in the CAE/Cad/CAT, JIT , simulation and automatic assembly environments. He also has performed studies and headed research projects in the computer-integrated manufacturing environment. Mr. Hanson has extensive experience in the testing disciplines (both factory and field, commercial and military). His teaching experience include electronic conventions, over 100 private companies on site, and universities. Boeing Company awarded him Aerospace Man of the Year for saving $6,000,000 for inventing a new testing technique for the Boeing B-1 bomber electronics.

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