This tech brief will explain how the use of a Real-Time Spectrum Analyzer (RTSA) can reliably detect and characterize transient RF signals, while also greatly reducing the time taken to identify the source of the problem. A number of different examples will be used to demonstrate how the unique capabilities of a RTSA can be used in a broad range of applications where it is critical to identify intermittent and interfering signals.
The RF spectrum is becoming increasingly crowded and busy, creating much more pontential for systems and signals to interfere with each other. Not only are there more RF signals today, but typically these RF signals are much more transient and complex in natures, making it difficult for RF Engineers to identify the source of interfering signals in an operational environment.
With many of today's RF systems using techniques such as frequency hopping, pulses and digital modulation, it becomes more difficult to find, record and identify the source of the interference since the "problem signal" may only be present for a brief moment. Additionally, the signal may quickly change frequency, or may even get combined with the expected transmission causing the quality of service to be degraded.
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