Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Ever wonder what AM and FM stands for when tuning your radio dial?

The amazing thing about radio is that the electromagnetic signals are invisible but the transmitters and antennas are not. That is the key to modulation. AM simply means "amplitude modulation" while FM means "frequency modulation." To simplify this, you would say that amplitude is the measure of the message traveling inconsistently more prone to interference and the modulation is the movement of that measure of sound. In regards to FM, you would say that the frequency is the measure of the message traveling consistently and the modulation is the movement of that measure of sound. Although the math is complicated it's quite simple, a good example would be: Shouting from the roof and the person on the ground level hearing your voice, except you use electromagnetic radio waves to transmit the sound so they can hear you at the airport instead of on the ground. The AM (amplitude modulation) would be the weaker signal and the FM (frequency modulation) would be the stronger signal. 

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