[time-nuts] Allan variance by sine-wave fitting
jimlux
jimlux at earthlink.net
Mon Nov 27 18:03:08 EST 2017
On 11/27/17 2:45 PM, Magnus Danielson wrote:
>
> There is nothing wrong about attempting new approaches, or even just
> test and idea and see how it pans out. You should then compare it to a
> number of other approaches, and as you test things, you should analyze
> the same data with different methods. Prototyping that in Python is
> fine, but in order to analyze it, you need to be careful about the details.
>
> I would consider one just doing the measurements and then try different
> post-processings and see how those vary.
> Another paper then takes up on that and attempts analysis that matches
> the numbers from actual measurements.
>
> So, we might provide tough love, but there is a bit of experience behind
> it, so it should be listened to carefully.
>
It is tough to come up with good artificial test data - the literature
on generating "noise samples" is significantly thinner than the
literature on measuring the noise.
When it comes to measuring actual signals with actual ADCs, there's also
a number of traps - you can design a nice approach, using the SNR/ENOB
data from the data sheet, and get seemingly good data.
The challenge is really in coming up with good *tests* of your
measurement technique that show that it really is giving you what you
think it is.
A trivial example is this (not a noise measuring problem, per se) -
You need to measure the power of a received signal - if the signal is
narrow band, and high SNR, then the bandwidth of the measuring system
(be it a FFT or conventional spectrum analyzer) doesn't make a lot of
difference - the precise filter shape is non-critical. The noise power
that winds up in the measurement bandwidth is small, for instance.
But now, let's say that the signal is a bit wider band or lower SNR or
you're uncertain of its exact frequency, then the shape of the filter
starts to make a big difference.
Now, let’s look at a system where there’s some decimation involved - any
decimation raises the prospect of “out of band signals” aliasing into
the post decimation passband. Now, all of a sudden, the filtering
before the decimator starts to become more important. And the number of
bits you have to carry starts being more important.
It actually took a fair amount of work to *prove* that a system I was
working on
a) accurately measured the signal (in the presence of other large signals)
b) that there weren’t numerical issues causing the strong signal to show
up in the low level signal filter bins
c) that the measured noise floor matched the expectation
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