Let there be given a sequence of some signals.
For ex.,
At time 0 the 1st signal appears.
At time 3 seconds the 2nd appears (1st continuing).
4 sec, 1st disappears.
6 sec, 3rd appears, (2nd continuing).
7 sec, 2nd disappears.
9 sec, 4th appears, (3rd continuing).
And so on.
Moreover, the appearances and disappearances are not momentary but gradual.

Please help me choose the term that defines the time interval which is 3 seconds in the above example. Could it be

signal(s) occurrence intervals,
interval between signal(s) arrival(s),
signal(s) arrival(s) interval,
return period?

or some else?

Words such as "rate", "frequency", etc., do not fit because the term should mean exactly time interval, this time interval will need to be compared with another time interval (“...in the case when the _______ is less than the time required for the operation execution.”).

Especially valuable for me would be a native English speaker's answer with a technical background.

P.S. I will be grateful if you indicate all grammatical or syntax errors in my posts, if any.

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    I think you'll get better answers at physics.stackexchange.com – Davo Aug 8 '17 at 16:05
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    Why does rate not fit? The signals appear at the rate of 1 new signal every 3 seconds. – michael.hor257k Aug 8 '17 at 18:05
  • michael.hor257k, because I cannot say “the rate less than the time required for the operation execution.” – Diusha Aug 9 '17 at 4:47
  • How about “the rate less than the duration of a signal”? – Weather Vane Aug 9 '17 at 7:18
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    Weather Vane, I seem it is not correct to compare rate with duration. “Rate” means the number of some events per second, minute, etc. “Duration” is measured in seconds or minutes. This is exactly the same as we can not compare length (in meters) with mass (in kilograms). However, I am not a native English speaker. Correct me please if I am wrong. – Diusha Aug 9 '17 at 14:11

Period, see def. 6 here, is typically used in this context. It has units of time, e.g. seconds; it’s inverse is the frequency.

In the case when the period is less than 5 seconds ...


You might be looking for "cycle".

  • an interval of time during which a sequence of a recurring succession of events or phenomena is completed
  • a course or series of events or operations that recur regularly and usually lead back to the starting point


Perhaps with a combination of "series"

  • a number of things or events of the same class coming one after another in spatial or temporal succession


For something like:

"The series of signals cycled every three seconds."

. . . or:

"The signal series was on a three-second cycle."

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    Thank you. But I need a phrase that can be substituted in the sentence “...in the case when the _______ is less than the time required for...”. Are the phrases “signal series cycle interval” or “signal series cycle period” correct and clear? – Diusha Aug 10 '17 at 11:59
  • I think ". . . in the case when the cycle period is less than the time required for . . ." would make sense in context, but of course your mileage may vary. – EightyEighty Aug 10 '17 at 16:13

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