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Signals can be represented by discrete quantities instead of as a function of a continuous variable. These discrete time signals do notnecessarily have to take real number values. Many properties of continuous valued signals transfer almost directly to the discretedomain.

So far, we have treated what are known as analog signals and systems. Mathematically, analog signals are functions having continuous quantities as theirindependent variables, such as space and time. Discrete-time signals are functions defined on the integers; they are sequences. One ofthe fundamental results of signal theory will detail conditions under which an analog signal can be converted into a discrete-time one andretrieved without error . This result is important because discrete-time signals can be manipulated bysystems instantiated as computer programs. Subsequent modules describe how virtually all analog signal processing can beperformed with software.

As important as such results are, discrete-time signals are more general, encompassing signals derived fromanalog ones and signals that aren't. For example, the characters forming a text file form a sequence,which is also a discrete-time signal. We must deal with such symbolic valued signals and systems as well.

As with analog signals, we seek ways of decomposing real-valueddiscrete-time signals into simpler components. With this approach leading to a better understanding of signal structure,we can exploit that structure to represent information (create ways of representing information with signals) and to extractinformation (retrieve the information thus represented). For symbolic-valued signals, the approach is different: We develop acommon representation of all symbolic-valued signals so that we can embody the information they contain in a unified way. Froman information representation perspective, the most important issue becomes, for both real-valued and symbolic-valued signals,efficiency; What is the most parsimonious and compact way to represent information so that it can be extracted later.

Real- and complex-valued signals

A discrete-time signal is represented symbolically as s n , where n -1 0 1 . We usually draw discrete-time signals as stem plots toemphasize the fact they are functions defined only on the integers. We can delay a discrete-time signal by an integerjust as with analog ones. A delayed unit sample has the expression δ n m , and equals one when n m .

Discrete-time cosine signal

The discrete-time cosine signal is plotted as a stem plot. Can you find the formula for this signal?

Complex exponentials

The most important signal is, of course, the complex exponential sequence .

s n 2 f n


Discrete-time sinusoids have the obvious form s n A 2 f n φ . As opposed to analog complex exponentials and sinusoids thatcan have their frequencies be any real value, frequencies of their discrete-time counterparts yield unique waveforms only when f lies in the interval 1 2 1 2 . This property can be easily understood by noting that addingan integer to the frequency of the discrete-time complex exponential has no effect on the signal's value.

2 f m n 2 f n 2 m n 2 f n
This derivation follows because the complex exponential evaluated at an integer multiple of 2 equals one.

Unit sample

The second-most important discrete-time signal is the unit sample , which is defined to be

δ n 1 n 0 0

Unit sample

The unit sample.

Examination of a discrete-time signal's plot, like that of the cosine signal shown in [link] , reveals that all signals consist of a sequence of delayed andscaled unit samples. Because the value of a sequence at each integer m is denoted by s m and the unit sample delayed to occur at m is written δ n m , we can decompose any signal as a sum of unit samples delayed to the appropriate location and scaled bythe signal value.

s n m s m δ n m
This kind of decomposition is unique to discrete-time signals, and will prove useful subsequently.

Discrete-time systems can act on discrete-time signals in wayssimilar to those found in analog signals and systems. Because of the role of software in discrete-time systems, many moredifferent systems can be envisioned and “constructed” with programs than can be with analog signals. In fact, a specialclass of analog signals can be converted into discrete-time signals, processed with software, and converted back into ananalog signal, all without the incursion of error. For such signals, systems can be easily produced in software, withequivalent analog realizations difficult, if not impossible, to design.

Symbolic-valued signals

Another interesting aspect of discrete-time signals is thattheir values do not need to be real numbers. We do have real-valued discrete-time signals like the sinusoid, but wealso have signals that denote the sequence of characters typed on the keyboard. Such characters certainly aren't realnumbers, and as a collection of possible signal values, they have little mathematical structure other than that they aremembers of a set. More formally, each element of the symbolic-valued signal s n takes on one of the values a 1 a K which comprise the alphabet A . This technical terminology does not mean we restrict symbols to being members of the Englishor Greek alphabet. They could represent keyboard characters, bytes (8-bit quantities), integers that convey dailytemperature. Whether controlled by software or not, discrete-time systems are ultimately constructed from digitalcircuits, which consist entirely of analog circuit elements. Furthermore, the transmission andreception of discrete-time signals, like e-mail, is accomplished with analog signals and systems. Understandinghow discrete-time and analog signals and systems intertwine is perhaps the main goal of this course.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Nikki Reply

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Source:  OpenStax, Fundamentals of electrical engineering i. OpenStax CNX. Aug 06, 2008 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col10040/1.9
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