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It can be shown that present usage of amplitude modulation does not permit the inherent capabilities of the modulation process to be realized. In order to achieve the ultimate performance of which AM is capable synchronous or coherent detection techniques must be used at the receiver and carrier suppression must be employed at the transmitter. When a performance comparison is made between a synchronous AM system and a single-sideband system it is shown that many of the advantages normally attributed to single-sideband no longer exist. SSB has no power advantage over the synchronous AM (DSB) system and SSB is shown to be more susceptible to Jamming. The performance of the two systems with regard to multipath or selective fading conditions is also discussed. The DSB system shows a decided advantage over SSB with regard to system complexity, especially at the transmitter. The bandwidth saving of SSB over DSB is considered and it is shown that factors other than signal bandwidth must be considered. The number of usable channels is not necessarily doubled by the use of SSB and in many practical situations no increase in the number of usable channels results from the use of SSB. The transmitting and receiving equipment which has been developed under Air Force sponsorship is discussed. The receiving system design involves a local oscillator phase-control system which derives carrier phase information from the sidebands alone and does not require the use of a pilot carrier or synchronizing tone. The avoidance of superheterodyne techniques in this receiver is explained and the versatility of such a receiving system with regard to the reception of many different types of signals is pointed out. System test results to date are presented and discussed.
Date of Publication: March 1957