Understanding and Applying Probability of Intercept in Real-Time Spectrum Analysis

Application Notes

As today’s wireless signals become more complex, the process of analyzing and understanding those signals becomes more difficult. Examples of complex signals include signals with some combination of highly agile carrier frequencies, digital modulation, time-division multiplexing, and burst shapes. Additionally, more devices and systems are using the same frequency bands; as a result, it is becoming increasingly difficult to identify and characterize interference and signal errors, especially when they come from transient signals.


When chasing an elusive signal, several attributes are important: when it occurs, how long it lasts, where it occurs within the spectrum, and how large or small it is. Determining these attributes requires a signal analyzer capable of performing real-time spectrum analysis (RTSA), real-time data capture, or both. Realtime spectrum analysis is crucial for detecting, observing, and identifying transient signals, while real-time data capture enables detailed post-processing analysis, including demodulation. Keysight Technologies, Inc. signal analyzers equipped with RTSA include the N9020B and N9021B MXAs; the N9038B MXE EMI Receiver; the N9030B and N9032B PXAs; and the N9040B, N9041B, and N9042B UXAs.


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