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Test and Measurement

Troubleshooting Passive Intermodulation Problems in the Field

August 11, 2011
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1.0 Introduction

The introduction of high-speed data within mobile communications devices has increased the network traffic within a cellular system to the degree that it is greatly affecting network performance.

It is broadly understood that Passive Intermodulation (PIM) is a formidable issue within the cellular industry. This type of test has been in use for 15 years or more within the OEM industry throughout the world. As extra cellular transmitters and modulation formats are commissioned into service in new or existing sites, the statistical performance can appear to change dramatically. Ultimately, this can result in poor site/sector performance and reduced coverage, and this is why testing for PIM is now required in the field.

The purpose of this paper is to introduce the troubleshooting methods currently used in the cellular construction industry as well as to offer some background knowledge of Passive Inter-Modulation (PIM).

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