To provide the students with the necessary background knowledge and information to be able to successfully complete the remainder of the course.

This module is only offered as part of the Guided Weapon Systems MSc.

What you will learn

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

Knowledge and understanding

• be familiar with the library, IT and FLSC services at Shrivenham.
• understand the basic terminology involved with the wide variety of GW systems in service today.
• be acquainted with some of the mathematical methods and techniques used in many of the later modules.
• identify the properties, characteristics and behaviour of sensor and EW electromagnetic system components.
• analyse the propagation of electromagnetic waves in free space and transmission lines.

Skills and other attributes

• model the propagation of electromagnetic signals in a practical environment,
• analyse, using antenna theory, measurements made in the laboratory and modelling using a Matlab-based software package, the performance of commonly encountered antennas, comparing the results from these three approaches.

Core content

Module topics:
Introduction to GW

  • terminology, fundamental technology and examples.
 Library induction

  •  library services. 

  • computer and FLSC services,
  • email accounts,
  • Moodle,
  • Turnitin.

  • differentiation,
  • integration,
  • complex numbers,
  • matrices, 
  • differential equations.
Laplace transforms

  • Matlab and Simulink. 
  • introduction and worked examples.

Upgrade to a professional qualification

When taken as an Accredited Short Course, 10 credit points can be put towards the Guided Weapon Systems MSc.

Find out more about short course credit points.

Who should attend

This course is suitable for those individuals who require a general overview of guided weapon technology and design.


The Guided Weapon Systems MSc is fully accredited by the Royal Aeronautical Society and Institution of Mechanical Engineers.


Dr Derek Bray


A limited number of MOD sponsored places are available for the Guided Weapon Systems MSc.

Location and travel

Cranfield Defence and Security (CDS) is a Cranfield School based at the Ministry of Defence establishment on the Oxfordshire/Wiltshire borders.

Shrivenham itself lies in the picturesque Vale of the White Horse, close to the M4 motorway which links London and South Wales. It is 7 miles from Swindon, the nearest town, which lies off the M4 at the hub of Britain’s motorway network.

Bath, Cheltenham, Bristol and Oxford are all within an hour’s drive and London less than two hours away by car.

All visitors must be pre-booked in at reception by the person they are visiting on the campus.

For further location and travel details

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.