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The phenomenological mechanisms of passive intermodulation (PIM) in printed lines have been explored by mapping intermodulation products generated by the two-tone traveling waves in microstrip lines. Near-field probing based upon a commercial PIM analyzer has been employed for identification of the PIM sources in printed lines. The results of extensive near-field probing provide the direct experimental evidences of cumulative growth of the intermodulation products in the matched uniform microstrip lines and reveal the fundamental role of the nonlinear scattering by the lumped nonlinear inclusions in the intermodulation production. The distributed nature of the PIM generation in microstrip lines has been conclusively demonstrated and comprehensively described in terms of the four-wave mixing process that proved to be fully consistent with the results of experimental observations of third-order PIM products on the matched and mismatched microstrip lines.