Spectrum Monitoring

The Key Bridge Wideband Spectrum Monitoring System is a powerful and cost-effective turn-key solution for spectrum situational awareness.

Contact Us to discuss your particular configuration.

spectrum monitoring

Technology Overview

The Key Bridge Wideband Spectrum Monitoring System is an integrated spectrum capture, monitoring and data management solution that transforms off-air data into meaningful, actionable information in near real-time.

Spectrum Monitor System Overview

System Overview.

Spectrum Monitoring supports a variable sized constellation of intelligent spectrum sensors for data collection that may be permanently or intermittently con- nected to the Network. Sensors may be remotely deployed and connected over any standard TCP/IP network including cable, fiber, remote dial up and 3G cellular, to provide high performance remote signal monitoring and near real-time carrier detection – within a building, city-wide, or across an entire theater of operation.

The Key Bridge Wideband Spectrum Monitoring system is built around a custom developed, network-aware, digital RF sensing system with frequency coverage of 5 MHz to 2,500 MHz, enabling for rapid identification of fixed and transient signals in most all commercially and tactically relevant parts of the spectrum. The system seamlessly merges the capabilities of high-performance spectrum analysis with a geographically distributed intelligent sensor net- work.

Private versus Leased & Managed Configurations

End-to-end systems are typically required when the information must remain private or secure. If your information security profile permits cloud-based operations and shared infrastructure then a managed, leased system may offer a compelling alternative.

Popular with commercial and enterprise users, a Key Bridge managed, leased spectrum monitoring system can help companies reduce start-up and ongoing expenses and allow rapid access to critical spectrum data that they need without the operational overhead of running a dedicated sensor network.

Features & Capabilities

The end-to-end spectrum monitoring system supporting variable sized constellations of sensors that are intelligent, network aware digital receivers with 5 MHz to 2,500 MHz frequency response.

Distributed Intelligence with Central Analysis and Control

Key Bridge custom developed spectrum sensors are low-cost intelligent network appliances with local spectrum processing and analysis capability. Our radio frequency monitoring and carrier detection system emphasizes low-cost, high performance general processing power and places resources close the data acquisition source. Internal storage allows rapid deployment or expansion into new geographic areas of interest, whereby sensing system may be deployed immediately and then synchronized days, weeks or months later with no loss of data while the network infrastructure catches up.

Spectrum Monitor System Overview

Centralized analysis and control.

Support for Multiple Wideband RF Sensors

Modern wireless transmitters may operate with lower power, higher frequencies and wider sig- nal bandwidths than before. New cognitive and software defined radios can be frequency agile, finding and transmitting in channels across a wide spectrum, while RF propagation characteristics may create hidden nodes that are not be detectable at a receiver’s location.

These trends require a new approach to spectrum monitoring, carrier detection and transmitter identification where receivers must be both located closer to the transmitter and distributed across geographic areas of interest. The Key Bridge Wideband Spectrum Monitoring System provides an affordable turn-key solution for these unique challenges.

Key Features

  • Support for variable sized constellations of sensors
  • Intelligent, network aware digital receivers with 5 MHz to 2,500 MHz frequency response
  • Fine grained job control for operation across large areas and frequencies of interest
  • Simplified field installation and configuration: Connect the antenna + power and GO!
  • Large internal storage enables off-network monitoring with no impact on performance
  • Auto-calibrated digital spectrum measurements with fine grain time-stamping
  • Optional GPS support for field monitoring and “drive test” surveys
  • Industry standard TCP/IP networking, security and data encryption enabled by default
  • Enclosure options support indoor and outdoor installations
  • Solid state drive and internal battery options available

Common Applications & Uses

  • Spectrum occupancy, utilization, monitoring and inventory
  • Signal search, detection and transmitter identification
  • Interference and carrier intrusion detection and resolution
  • Continuous spectrum and carrier performance monitoring
  • Long-term spectrum characterization and noise floor measurements
  • Emitter geolocation

Advanced Functionality

This end-to-end spectrum monitoring solution supports variable sized constellations of low-cost sensors that are intelligent, network aware digital receivers with frequency response from 5 MHz to 2,500 MHz.

Mapping and Visualization

The Wideband Spectrum Monitoring System leverages Key Bridge Spectrum Mapping technologies for quick and detailed visual inspection of your spectrum environment. The System leverages patent pending methods to combine predicted coverage models with empirical measurement and presents a highly accurate digital representation of your real-world spectrum environment.

Spectrum Mapping

Mapping of predicted and empirical data. Map data © Google

Key Bridge Wideband Spectrum Monitoring System enables you to make informed choices and better plan your own deployments.

Fixed and Mobile Multi-Sensor Networks

Captured spectrum data is automatically geo-tagged whenever the optional GPS receiver is attached to the RF sensor. Combined with the device’s internal storage and persistent configuration, the system supports mobile sensing and on-the-move survey applications out-of-the-box and with no additional configuration required.

If desired, a local computer can directly interface with the device to view spectrum survey data and receive alerts in near real-time. Data is recorded and automatically synchronized with the System Manager when network connectivity is reestablished.

Supports fixed & mobile stations

Fixed & mobile sensor grids

Intelligent Analysis

Automated carrier detection and continuous, long-term monitoring capabilities provide new insight and clarity for spectrum occupancy, transmitter characterization and environmental measurements.

Automated Carrier Detection and Identification

Automated Carrier Detection

Automated carrier detection

Continuous and transient candidate signals are automatically identified and marked for inspection in near real-time. When connected to a network, the SM 3500 system attempts to match detected signals with ITU allocation type and known entities in the licensed or unlicensed transmitter database.

For operation outside the United States, spectrum plan information may be configured several ways: automatically via external data services; bulk data import into the system’s database; semi automatically via user acknowledgement of detected signals; or via user data entry.

Continuous & Sustained Long-Term Monitoring

Spectrum Monitoring

Occasional use transmissions

Accurate spectrum monitoring requires continuous data acquisition over extended periods. Whether ensuring the presence of known carriers, assuring the absence of unwelcome or unauthorized transmitters or monitoring transient or unlicensed activities, only continuous, long-term monitoring can provide meaningful context and perspective.

The obvious benefits of sustained monitoring are often not realized as spectrum analyzers are prohibitively expensive, not network aware, and cannot be easily installed or controlled remotely. Key Bridge solves this problem with a custom-developed, low-cost, network-enabled intelligent receiver that leverages local processing and storage with central management, analysis and control.

Desktop & Remote Client

A desktop application and rich Internet portal enable seamless local and remote access to your entire sensor grid.

Local plus Remote Monitoring and Control

Desktop Application Screenshot

Desktop user interface

The spectrum sensor is designed to simplify a technician’s task load while ensuring reliable, high-performance data acquisition at minimal cost. It has no front panel controls and is fully capable of independent, un-tethered operation.

Key Bridge provides a fully-functional desktop application for individual sensor control and out-of-box configurations. Once deployed in the field a sensor is capable of autonomous, independent operation and can be securely managed and controlled remotely.

Technical Specifications

The system’s modular design creates an affordable entry point that easily scales to support high-availability, load balancing and fail-over redundancy.

The spectrum sensor is designed to simplify a technician’s task load while ensuring reliable, high-performance data acquisition at minimal cost. It has no front panel controls and is fully capable of independent, un-tethered operation out of the box.

Frequency Coverage5 MHz to 2,500 MHz
Span Width1 MHz to 1,250 MHz
Resolution Bandwidth0.01 MHz to 1 MHz
RF SensitivityGreater than -85 dBm typical
Reference Levels-10 dBm to -50 dBm
Dynamic Range40 dB
Receiver Accuracy+/- 1 dB typical
Frequency Accuracy+/- 0.001 MHz typical
Input ConnectorBNC & N type (Others optional)
CPU IntelAtom D525
Memory1 GByte DDR3
Storage1 TB HDD (128 GB Solid State Drive optional)
Networking2 x 1000 BaseT Ethernet
(optional with 802.11g WLAN)
Operating SystemSecurity Enhanced Linux, Embedded
Size17” x 8” x 2” for indoor unit
11” x 9” x 5” for outdoor unit
Weight4 lbs for indoor unit
5 lbs for outdoor unit (w/o battery)
Power Requirements+12 VDC / 25 W maximum draw
Operating Temperature0 to +40 deg C

Installation Options

Indoor Enclosure

Spectrum Monitoring

Indoor 1U Half-depth Chassis

The indoor configuration is a 1-rack unit, 1/2 depth rack mountable standard computer chassis similar to the configuration shown with a factory-installed and integrated sensor subsystem (not shown).

Indoor configurations are delivered with a BNC antenna connector.

Outdoor Enclosure

Spectrum Monitoring

Outdoot Pole-mount Chassis

The outdoor configuration has the sensor installed in a painted die cast aluminum outdoor enclosure configured with a 20mm hole for a CAT5 or other cable feed through and a cutout for mounting an N type bulkhead connector for attaching an external antenna.

The enclosure is gasket sealed for protection from the elements and meets a NEMA 4X / IP65 rating for weatherproofing and comes with a u-bolt bracket kit for mounting to a wall or to a pole with diameter up to 1.7".

Mobile Installations

Mobile installations are custom engineered according to the vehicle and ruggedness requirements.

Contact us to get started.

Contact Us to discuss your particular configuration.

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