Rohde & Schwarz Interference Hunting in Smart Factories

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In the era of advanced technology, smart factories rely on wireless solutions. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) enables highly reliable, secure and low-latency communications between the manufacturing devices with automated and increased productivity. However, any source of RF interference can cause the production process disruption or the output delay. 

In today’s networks, unwanted RF interferer signal transmitters are common. A few decibels of signal to noise ratio reduction at the receiver significantly influence network capacity. How to determine the location of interferers and keep the business agility? Read on to find out.

RF Interferer signals

The RF interferer signals can appear at any time and be located anywhere on the manufacturing floor. Unwanted signals can come unintentionally or on purpose, modulated or unmodulated, causing RF interference that impedes wireless communications. Critical LMR or LTE communications between first responders can begin that, and navigational devices that employ GPS or other satellite-based location services.

To eliminate interferences, it is important to use the right equipment, such as spectrum analyzers, scanners, and receivers. Scanners can detect undesirable transmitters automatically, and spectrum analyzers or receivers, combined with a direction-finding antenna and sophisticated software, can automate locating interference.

Rohde & Schwarz Interference Analysis Solutions

Because The RF signals cannot be seen to the naked eye, Rohde & Schwarz has the solution for it – Rugged portable spectrum analyzers. These devices can be used anywhere in the factory and display all RF signals. Users can use recording features to do postprocessing and examine occurrence patterns to figure out where the emitter is coming from.

The Rohde & Schwarz Spectrum Rider FPH is a handheld spectrum analyzer that can measure frequencies from 5 kHz to 31 GHz. This rider can run for up to eight hours on a single charge, depending on the model. Its compact size and ergonomic design make it simple to transport and utilise. This handheld spectrum analyser weighs only 2.5 kg, independent of the frequency range, and meets the IP class 54 standard.

Figure 1. Rohde & Schwarz Spectrum Rider FPH handheld spectrum analyzer.

The analyzer can record the spectrogram for up to 999 hours with the FPH-K15 interference analysis option from Rohde & Schwarz; the duration is dependent on the recording interval setting. Postprocessing can be done on the analyzer with the free to download InstrumentView software from Rohde & Schwarz or without it.

Figure 2. InstrumentView software from Rohde & Schwarz can help postprocess interference activity. Source: Rohde & Schwarz

The signal intensity of the emitter can be displayed on an uploaded production floorplan with the help of FPH-K16 signal strength mapping. The signal strength mapping option provides a visual depiction of the emitter’s signal strength in a certain area as well as indicates where the emitter is (see Figure 3).

Figure 3. Signal strength measurement on an indoor map with the FPH-K16 from Rohde & Schwarz
indicates that the interferer may be close to the entry. The interfering factor in this scenario is a malfunctioning digital advertising board near the entryway. Source: Rohde & Schwarz

Eliminating all kinds of interference

Eliminating the possible risk of unwanted interferences requires the right devices. Network operators, regulators, and service providers can quickly and accurately identify and locate any source of RF interference in mobile networks, thanks to the Spectrum Rider FPH from Rohde & Schwarz. Interference hunting in factories can be very simple and efficient. Analysis devices give you a guarantee that your smart factory will run smoothly.

Source: Rohde & Schwarz

Handheld Spectrum Analyser, 4GHz, 50Ohm, Rohde & Schwarz

The Rohde & Schwarz Spectrum Rider FPH is a handheld spectrum analyzer that can measure frequencies from 5 kHz to 31 GHz. It is made to work in both the field and the lab, in both indoor and outdoor settings. Thanks to its compact size and an ergonomic design, it is simple to carry and can be used in a variety of outdoor settings. Features: 2.5 kg, independent of frequency range, meets the IP class 54 standard.

Spectrum Analyser, 3GHz, 50Ohm, Rohde & Schwarz

The Rohde & Schwarz spectrum analysers series is as important in an RF lab as an oscilloscope or multimeter. It is a single measuring device that may be used for a range of purposes. It allows for spectrum analysis and very accurate power measurement using power sensors and for the analysis of both analogue and digitally modulated signals.

Signal Strength Mapping, Rohde & Schwarz

The FPH-K16 signal strength mapping option from Rohde & Schwarz is excellent for evaluating and locating confusing signals or interferers. The signal strength mapping shows a graphical representation of the signal power level on an interior or outdoor map.

HIGH VALUE 3-in-1 Vector Network Analyser Bundle, 6GHz, 50Ohm, Rohde & Schwarz

The Rohde & Schwarz vector signal generator is state-of-the-art in its class. It is suited for a wide range of applications thanks to its ultra-high output power, fully calibrated wideband signal production, and simple touchscreen operation. Features: frequency range from 8 kHz to 3 GHz or 6 GHz, signal generation for all major digital communications standards: 5G NR, LTE and WLAN.

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