image ©tSCAMP/Imperial College London/ EBU
With every new generatio of mobile phone technology there are claims that the radiation associated with the technology is dangerous?
The electromagnetic spectrum ranges (in increasing frequency) from radio waves, mobile technology, microwaves, visible light, ultra-violet light, x-rays to gamma waves. As the frequency increases the energy of a "photon" increases proportionally. Higher frequencies have more energy and can do more damage. Also the amount of radiation absorbed can be an issue. The spectrum can be split into ionising radiation and non-ionising waves. Ionising waves (ultra violet and beyond) have the potential to alter cells and are carcinogenic. But waves of lower frequencies do not. The most that they can do is to add a bit of heat to the exposed area. To measure that heat we need a large amount of exposure
With a TV mast, to send the signal further more power is transmitted from the source. Thi is NOT the case with mobile phone technology. Increasing the cell strength will increase the cell size and thus reduce the overall capacity. With 5G in particular small cells are used to give capacity and to achieve small cells the broadcast power is reduced. Similarly, to preserve battery life, a mobile will communicate with the base station with the lowest power possible. So mobile phone technology, by the technology, will reduce power of the radiation to a low level
OfCOM, in the UK, have monitored radiation of mobile phone technology ever since 2003. Their latest study into 5G show that the radiation levels are 0.039% of safe levels - basically insignificant. Interestingly the World Health Organisation (WHO) classify the risks of many things. They put the risk from mobile phone radiation as "possible carcinogenic" putting it on a par with pickled vegetables and talcum powder; and lower than processed food and alcohol.
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