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Intermodulation (IM) distortion

Intermodulation distortion is a scenario where signals from outside the monitored channel combine nonlinearly to produce frequencies within monitored channel frequency range. This intermodulation distortion is a completely undesirable but un-avoidable scenario in RF.

Distortions in a system are represented with the help of Taylor series. Each term in Taylor series is represented as in formula below.

Where ft1 and ft2 are the frequencies of two different inputs signals to the system. Variable n can have any integer value.


Solving the above equation for n=2 will results in terms with frequency.

M is a variable which takes the values 0,1 and 2

So we get,  m = 0,

Second order distortion product =

m = 1,

Second order distortion product =

m = 2,

Second order distortion product =

Lets discuss following Intermodulation products:-

Second Order Intermodulation products are discussed below.
Access Third order Intermodulation products from here..
MDS & DR IM distortion IP3 IP3 Plot RX characterization Antenna Sel Cascade F PLL
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Interview Questions. Main, FPGA, Digital Fundamentals
Second order intermodulation products:

Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR).

Noise Factor (F).

Noise Figure (NF).

Minimum Detectable Signal (MDS).

Intermodulation (IM) distortion.

Second order intermodulation products.

Third order intermodulation products.

IP3 (Third Order Intercept) point.

Dynamic Range (DR)



Spurious outputs

Gain control


Other related RF topics:-