Introduction to Phase Noise in Signal Generators

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  • Author: By Leonard Dickstein, Marketing Manager

Phase noise is the result of small random fluctuations or uncertainty in the phase of an electronic signal. It is measured because it is a fundamental limitation in the performance of systems, limiting dynamic range. This shows up in radar and communications as loss of sensitivity, in imaging as lack of definition and in digital systems as higher bit error rate. This paper focuses on phase noise in the frequency domain. Phase noise can also be quantified as jitter in the time domain.

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