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microwave absorbtion



Kevin Muenzler wrote:

As far as cordless phones or cell phones causing cancer....BUNK!  RF energy, as most of you know, does only one thing...it heats the water in the tissue.  It does not break molecular bonds as some on the tabloid television shows have stated.  The amount of heating by cell phones and cordless phones can't even be measured due to the fact that the blood flow through the tissue dissipates the heat faster than it builds up.  It, as some have also stated, does not have the cumulative effect of ionizing radiation such as x-rays.

Wayne replies:

The heating of tissue by low power transmitters IS measured on a regular basis.  The measurement is called "Specific Absorption Rate", and it is REQUIRED by the FCC and many other countries' regulatory authorities to obtain type-acceptance for transmitting devices such as wireless phones that are operated close to the body.  The FCC's SAR limit is 1.6 mw/cm3 and the FCC takes this measurement VERY seriously.  The test is done under very controlled conditions with thermal probes inside simulated human body parts (head, mostly).

You are correct that despite considerable research, the long-term medical consequences (cancer, etc.) of this heating are not well understood.  I am not an expert in this field, so I don't know how the existing SAR limit was determined to be "safe".

Wayne Estes W9AE
Mundelein, IL, USA

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