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A signal can be anything which conveys information. For example a picture of a person gives you information regarding

whether he is short or tall, fair or black e.t.c Mathematically signal is defined as a function of one or more dependent

variables that conveys information about the state of a system. For example;

a) A speech signal is a function of time. Here independent variable is time and dependent variable is amplitude of speech

signal.

b) A picture containing varying brightness is a function of two spatial variables. Here independent variables are spatial

coordinates (X, Y) and dependent variable is brightness or amplitude of picture.

Classification of signals

Signals can be classified based on parameter used to classify them such as

a) Nature of independent variable such as time as

Continuous time signal

Discrete time signal

b) Nature of dependent variable or signal

Analog signal

Digital signal

c) Number of independent variables

One dimensional signal

Two dimensional signal

Multi dimensional signal

c) Based on periodicity of signal as

Periodic signal

Aperiodic signal

d) Based on nature of indeterminancy

Deterministic signal

random signal

e) Based on causality

Casual signal

Anti casual signal

Non casual signal

f) Based on energy content in the signal

Energy signal

Power signal

Neither energy nor power signals.

Continuous time signal, discrete time signal

Continuous time signals are the signals that are defined at a continuum of times i.e. time can assume any value from (-,

). It is a one to one mapping of signal for every value time assumes from (-, ), for every instance of time there exists a

unique and single value of function f (t). The signal also can have continuum of amplitude values. These signals are also

called as analog signals.

If we sample the signal at discrete intervals of time ignoring the values signal takes for times other than sampling times

then the signal is defined as discrete signal. The signal amplitudes are continuous and analog in nature.

Signals strictly speaking are all continuous time in nature; in discrete signals we are just ignoring the unwanted

information in the signal by taking signal amplitudes at discrete instants of time.

Analog signals, digital signals

Signals which are continuous in time and amplitude are called analog signals. That is both independent and dependent

variables are continuous in amplitude. All Continuous time signals are analog signals and vice versa.

Digital signals are one in which time is discrete in nature and amplitude of signals are quantized i.e. they are allowed to

take values from a fixed set of amplitudes. For example a binary signal can have only two values zero or one. Digital

signals are widely used in communications as they are less prone to noise.

analog to digital signal conversion

If the signal is a function of only one independent variable such signal is referred to as one dimensional signal. For

example a noisy voice signal shown in the figure is a one dimensional signal is a function of only time.

Similarly if the signal is a function of two dependent variables variable such signal is referred to as one dimensional signal.

For example a simple black and white picture is a function of intensity shown in the figure is a two dimensional signal is a

function of spatial coordinates X and Y. At each point (X, Y) an intensity value is assigned and mapped onto computer

screen as a 2D image.

Multidimensional signal is a function of more than two variables. For example a video signal is a function of three

independent variables which are time and two spatial coordinates(X, Y).

1D signal 2D signal

A signal can be classified as periodic signal if it repeats itself after a time interval of T, Where T is called period of the

signal. Mathematically a signal f(t) is said to be periodic if f(t+T) = f(t), where the T is the smallest positive non zero value

of all possible values of constants T for which the equality holds then T is said to be period of f(t). For example a sine

wave is periodic wave which satisfies sin () = sin (2*n*+ ) where n =0, +-1, +-2 But as per definition of period only

2*pi qualifies as period. Hence sin () is said to be periodic with period 2* .

A signal which is not periodic is said to be Aperiodic signal. Mathematically it can be defined as a periodic signal with

infinite period. Here infinite period signifies that the signal never repeats itself. Most of the signals we will be dealing are

aperiodic in nature.

A deterministic signal is a signal about which there is no uncertainty with respect to its value at any time. Deterministic

signals are modelled uniquely and completely specified functions of time. For example consider a carrier sine wave f (t) =

Am*cos (c*t) its value at any instant is completely defined and can be determined with certainty.

A random signal is a signal about which there is some degree of uncertainty before it actually shows up or before it

actually occurs. For example an outcome of a flipped coin can be heads or tails we dont know with 100 % certainty what

will be the outcome of the event of flipping a coin before the coin is flipped. Thats why we assign probabilities on the

possible outcomes based on our past experiences. In the example of flipping a coin we can say that the outcome can be

heads with 50% probability and outcome can be tails with 50% probability. Noise is a random signal which can be defined

in terms of probability.

Casual signal, Anti casual signal, Non casual signal

The notion of causality actually is more apt for systems nevertheless it can be applied to signals also. A signal is causal if

its amplitude is zero for negative instants of time i.e. t < 0. The causality of a signal depends on time reference (t= 0) at

what instant time is initialized to zero.

A signal is Anti casual signal if its amplitude is zero for positive instants of time t > 0. A non casual signal is one whose

amplitude is non zero for t < 0 and t > 0.

Consider a resistor of R ohms with the current passing through it is i (t), then the voltage across the resistor is V (t) = i

(t)*R. The instantaneous power dissipated in the resistor is

P = V2(t)/R in terms of voltage signal,

P = i2(t)*R in terms of current signal.

To remove the dependence of resistance and ease the analysis it is customary in signal analysis to work with one ohm

resistor for which both reduce to same form P = V2(t) = i2(t). Hence the

instantaneous power associated with signal f(t) is defined as P = |f(t)|2.

A signal f(t) is an energy signal if its total energy if finite and non zero. The average power associated with a energy signal

is zero.

A signal f (t) is a power signal if its average power if finite and non zero. The energy associated with a power signal is

infinite.

Signals which have infinite power and infinite energy are classified neither as energy signals or power signals.

Typically periodic signals and random signals are power signals.

SYSTEM

Definition of system

System can be considered as a physical entity which manipulates one or more input signals applied to it. For example a

microphone is a system which converts the input acoustic (voice or sound) signal into an electric signal. A system is

defined mathematically as a unique operator or transformation that maps an input signal in to an output signal. This is

defined as y(t) = T[x(t)] where x(t) is input signal, y(t) is output signal, T[] is transformation that characterizes the system

behavior.

There are many classifications of systems based on parameter used to classify them. They are

a) Linear, non linear systems

b) Time variant, time invariant systems

c) Stable, unstable systems

d) Causal, non causal systems

e) Continuous time, discrete time systems

f) Invertible and noninvertible systems

g) Dynamic and static systems.

Linear, nonlinear systems

A linear system is one which satisfies the principle of superposition and homogeneity or scaling.

Consider a linear system characterized by the transformation operator T[]. Let x1, x2 are the inputs applied to it and y1,

y2 are the outputs. Then the following equations hold for a linear system

y1 = T[x1], y2 = T[x2]

Principle of homogeneity: T [a*x1] = a*y1, T [b*x2] = =b*y2

Principle of superposition: T [x1] + T [x2] = a*y1+b*y2

Linearity: T [a*x1] + T [b*x2] = a*y1+b*y2

Where a, b are constants.

Linearity ensures regeneration of input frequencies at output. Nonlinearity leads to generation of new frequencies in the

output different from input frequencies. Most of the control theory is devoted to explore linear systems.

Time variant, time invariant systems

A system is said to be time variant system if its response varies with time. If the system response to an input signal does not

change with time such system is termed as time invariant system. The behavior and characteristics of time variant system

are fixed over time.

In time invariant systems if input is delayed by time t0 the output will also gets delayed by t0. Mathematically it is specified

as follows

y(t-t0) = T[x(t-t0)]

For a discrete time invariant system the condition for time invariance can be formulated mathematically by replacing t as

n*Ts is given as

y(n-n0) = T[x(n-n0)]

Where n0 is the time delay. Time invariance minimizes the complexity involved in the analysis of systems. Most of the

systems in practice are time invariant systems.

Note: In describing discrete time systems the sampling times n*Ts are mentioned as n i.e. a discrete signal x(n*Ts) is

indicated for simplicity as x(n).

Stable, unstable systems

Most of the control system theory involves estimation of stability of systems. Stability is an important parameter which

determines its applicability. Stability of a system is formulated in bounded input bounded output sense i.e. a system is

stable if its response is bounded for a bounded input(bounded means finite).

An unstable system is one in which the output of the system is unbounded for a bounded input. The response of an unstable

system diverges to infinity.

Causal, non causal systems

The principle of causality states that the output of a system always succeeds input. A system for which the principle of

causality holds is defined as causal system. If an input is applied to a system at time t=0 s then the output of a causal system

is zero for t<0. If the output depends on present and past inputs then system is casual otherwise non casual.

A system in which output (response) precedes input is known as Non causal system. If an input is applied to a system at time

t=0 s then the output of a non causal system is non zero for t<0. Such systems are referred as non-anticipative as the

system output does not anticipate future values of input. Non causal systems do not exist in practice.

Continuous time, discrete time systems

A system which deals with continuous time signals is known as continuous time system. For such a system the outputs and

inputs are continuous time signals.

Discrete time system deals with discrete time signals. For such a system the outputs and inputs are discrete time signals.

Invertible and non-invertible systems

A system is said to be invertible if distinct inputs lead to distinct outputs. For such a system there exists an inverse

transformation (inverse system) denoted by T-1[] which maps the outputs of original systems to the inputs applied.

Accordingly we can write

TT-1 = T-1T = I

Where I = 1 one for single input and single output systems.

A non-invertible system is one in which distinct inputs leads to same outputs. For such a system an inverse system will not

exist.

Dynamic and static systems

In static system the outputs at present instant depends only on present inputs. These systems are also called as memory less

systems as the system output at give time is dependent only on the inputs at that same time.

Dynamic systems are those in which the output at present instant depends on past inputs and past outputs. These are also called

as systems with memory as the system output needs to store information regarding the past inputs or outputs.

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