Cell Phone Radiation Damages Sperm, Studies Show

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Phones Carried on Belt or in Pants Pocket May Harm Reproductive Health
Although most scientific and public attention on the issue of the safety of cell phone radiation has focused on evidence suggesting an increased risk of brain tumors (Baan 2011), a little-noticed but growing body of research points to a new concern – sperm damage (La Vignera 2012).
In a comprehensive review of the published scientific literature, the Environmental Working Group found 10 human studies that have identified a startling variety of changes in sperm exposed to cell phone radiation. In the most striking findings, men who carried their phones in a pocket or on the belt were more likely to have lower sperm counts and/or more inactive or less mobile sperm. These findings accord with similar results in laboratory animals.
Collectively, the research indicates that exposure to cell phone radiation may lead to decreases in sperm count, sperm motility and vitality, as well as increases in indicators of sperm damage such as higher levels of reactive oxygen species (chemically reactive molecules containing oxygen), oxidative stress, DNA damage and changes in sperm morphology (see summary below).
Many men who talk on a cell phone using a Bluetooth device or other headset keep the phone in a pants pocket or clipped to a holster. This exposes their reproductive organs to cell phone radiation, and several studies have found lower sperm count and/or poorer sperm quality in men who use their phones this way than in those who do not.
Scientists have yet to identify a mechanism by which cell phone use might cause such effects (Makker 2009). However, the research appears to rule out the possibility that the changes are caused by simple heating, which is considered to be a possible source of some radiofrequency radiation-related health problems (De Iuliis 2009; Volkow 2011).
The findings are particularly significant in light of the fact that infertility affects approximately 15 percent of couples of reproductive age, and nearly half of these cases are linked to male fertility (Sharlip 2002). The number and consistency of the findings raise the possibility that cell phone radiation could be contributing to this significant public health problem and demand further investigation.
Studies linking cell phone exposure to harmful effects on sperm have been done in the United States, Australia, Austria, Hungary, Poland, Turkey and South Africa, using diverse methodologies. In some, scientists compared sperm counts and sperm health in men who wore cell phones on the hip with those who carried them elsewhere on the body or did not use cell phones at all. In others, researchers exposed sperm to cell phone radiation under laboratory conditions. In still others, scientists examined whether there was a correlation between sperm health and the intensity of cell phone use among men undergoing evaluation for infertility.
Among the findings:
Men who carried a phone in a hip pocket or on the belt had 11 percent fewer mobile sperm than men who kept a phone elsewhere on the body (Kilgallon 2005).
Men who carried a cell phone on the belt and used it intensively during a five-day test period had a 19 percent drop in highly motile sperm from their previous levels (Davoudi 2002).
Men who talked on the phone for more than an hour a day had 17 percent fewer highly motile sperm than men who talked less than 15 minutes a day (Fejes 2005).
Laboratory studies on the effects of cell phone radiation on rats, rabbits and other animals have found similar effects on reproductive health (Kesari 2011; Mailankot 2009).
All these studies found statistically significant correlations between cell phone radiation and sperm health, and many found that the adverse changes increased with the amount of radiation exposure. Opinions differ as to the possible mechanism by which cell phone radiation might produce these changes (Falzone 2010).
A number of research papers include unambiguous statements on the potential of cell phone radiation to affect men’s reproductive health:
“Keeping the cell phone in a trouser pocket in talk mode may negatively affect spermatozoa and impair male fertility” (Agarwal 2009).
“Use of cell phones decreases the semen quality in men by decreasing the sperm count, motility, viability and normal morphology. The decrease in sperm parameters was dependent on the duration of daily exposure to cell phones and independent of the initial semen quality” (Agarwal 2008).
“These findings have clear implications for the safety of extensive mobile phone use by males of reproductive age, potentially affecting both their fertility and the health and wellbeing of their offspring” (De Iuliis 2009).
“Overall, these findings raise a number of related health policy and patient management issues that deserve our immediate attention. Specifically, we recommend that men of reproductive age who engage in high levels of mobile phone use do not keep their phones in receiving mode below waist level” (De Iuliis 2009).
“Our results showed that cell phone use negatively affects sperm quality in men… Men with poor sperm quality planning for pregnancy should be advised not to use cell phones extensively” (Gutschi 2011).
“The results show that human spermatozoa exposed to RF-EMR have decreased motility, morphometric abnormalities and increased oxidative stress, whereas men using mobile phones have decreased sperm concentration, motility…, normal morphology, and viability. These abnormalities seem to be directly related with the length of mobile phone use” (La Vignera 2012).
Given the backdrop of increasing infertility rates (Swan 2006), the research findings should be a wake-up call to male cell phone users who are trying to have children or may want to in the future.
Even as scientists continue to gather new data on health risks from cell phone radiation, the findings underscore that consumers should practice simple, precautionary safe-cell-phone-use habits, such as keeping the phone away from the body, in order to protect their health and fertility. Men, in particular, should avoid carrying a cell phone on the belt or in a pants pocket when in use.
What About Women’s Health?
There are no published studies examining the effect of cell phone radiation on reproductive health in women. Such studies are much more difficult to carry out, since they often require invasive techniques. However, several recent articles suggested that cell phone radiation might be harmful to the developing fetus. For example, a 2009 study in Turkey found that after pregnant rats were exposed to cell phone radiation for 15 minutes twice a day during the entire gestation period, their female pups had fewer ovarian follicles (Gul 2009). A 2012 study by researchers at the Yale University School of Medicine found that mice exposed to cell phone radiation during gestation were hyperactive and had impaired memory (Aldad 2012).
There have been similar findings in two human studies. UCLA researchers reported that cell phone exposure during pregnancy and after birth was associated with behavioral problems in young children (Divan 2008; Divan 2012). This line of research is just beginning, but a recent review article emphasized that cell phone radiation might impact reproduction and development in both men and women (Merhi 2011).

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If Cell Phone and Cell Phone Tower Radiation Really Safe, Why is India Legislating to Protect Consumers?

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(NaturalNews) Once a third world economy, India is now leading the rest of the world when it comes to protecting consumers from the effects of radiation emanating from cell phones and cell phone towers.

When it comes to cell phones, the plan is simple and to the point: India, as of September 1, has decreased the acceptable amount of radio frequencies (RF) to 1/10 of the previous limits.

SARs, a measure of the rate at which RF energy is absorbed by the body, must now be embossed and displayed on cell handsets where they can be easily seen and have an impact on consumer decisions.

Supplementary safety advice from manufacturers must also be provided for:

• Recipients of medical implants
• Young people
• Pregnant women

India’s Indian Telegraph Act, 1885, has been altered to ensure these new standards are applicable for phones produced in India as well as those coming in from other countries.

Cell phone towers

While cell phones are a major health concern, cell phone towers are potentially even more dangerous due to the fact that the radiation being emitted from these towers is constant and stronger.

What is behind all of this concern and the implementation of new standards?

One answer comes from a unit of the World Health Organization, specifically the International Agency for Research on Cancer. The organization views radiation from cellphones as dangerous and has classified it as a Class 2B carcinogen, meaning the radiation in question is “”possibly carcinogenic to humans,”” with a higher risk for certain types of cancer, including cancer originating in the brain.

Another answer comes from the work of Professor Girish Kumar. Following his campaign, the local government of Gurgaon, shut down 298 cell towers in residential areas in January of last year.

The industry experts’ claim that “”Non-thermal biological effects have not been shown to be a health hazard”” is wearing very thin. Non-thermal effects are known to be several times more harmful than thermal effects. Professor Kumar has produced a separate 50 page report with nearly 200 technical and scientific references to prove this. There are viable solutions.

What are the solutions?

Solutions can be found in the recommendations issued by the New Delhi Ministry. To prevent overlapping of high radiation fields the ministry recommends:

• That new cell towers should not be permitted within a radius of one km of the existing towers
• The mandatory sharing of passive infrastructure for Telecom Service Providers at city/district/village level to minimize the need for having additional towers
• Location-wise GIS mapping of all cell phone towers to help in monitoring the population of birds and bees in and around the mobile towers and also in and/or around wildlife protection areas

Other activities to regulate the radiation stemming from cell phone towers comes from the Rajasthan High Court in Rajasthan, India where the court has authorized the state to take action by:

• Discarding towers already present on school grounds and hospitals
• Calculating how many people with cancer reside close to the towers
• Evaluating the conditions surrounding two specific residents of Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan, whose cancers may stem from cell phone towers

Nobody is saying ban cell phone towers, without antennas the network would not exist and people could not talk to each. What people are saying is “”why transmit so much power?”” India is now leading the way in terms of cell phone and cell tower consumer protection. Other nations need to pay attention and introduce legislation to protect consumers worldwide.

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Cell Tower Radiation Hits Delhi Government

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The hazards posed by radiation emitted by cell phone towers has caught the attention of Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit who convened a meeting on Wednesday to chalk out an action plan. All three municipal corporations, environment department, Delhi chief secretary and health and health and

department officials were present in the meeting.

Sources said that a private company presented a proposal in which a small antenna can be mounted on an electric pole, which will be connected with optical fibre cables to a cell phone tower. The company claimed that their product will reduce the radiation level from cell phone towers.

In the meeting, Dikshit said that the issue has to be addressed by all agencies as it concerns the common people. But a Delhi government official said that cell phone towers fall under the subject list of the department of telecommunication in the Union telecom ministry and any policy decision about limiting radiation levels has to be approved by them.

“People are concerned about the health hazards cell phone towers pose. At our level, we can only make the citizens aware of the technology available which can reduce the impact. However, issues such as the financial aspect have to be taken into consideration as it may increase call rates too. We will send these suggestions to the Centre which has to take the final call on it,” said a senior Delhi government official.

When quizzed over illegal cell phone towers that have still not been removed by civic agencies, Delhi government officials said that civic agencies can seal them.

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Stringent Mobile Radiation Standards Come into Force from tomorrow

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New Mobile Handsets to comply with SAR Value of 1.6W/KG

Penalty, Random Checks Introduced for Enforcement

Press Information Bureau, Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, Government of India, Aug 31, 2012

Beginning tomorrow (1st September 2012) India will be among the select few countries in the world to have stringent EMF (Electromagnetic Frequency) Radiation Standards, established in the interest of public health, for mobile towers and mobile handsets. Indian standards would now be 10 times more stringent than more than 90% countries in the world.

The following are the highlights of the Standards:

Mobile Towers (EMF Radiation Norms)

* EMF (Electromagnetic Frequency) exposure limit (Base Station Emissions) has been lowered to 1/10th of the existing ICNIRP exposure level, effective 1st Sept. 2012.

* Telecom Enforcement Resource & Monitoring (TERM) Cells have been entrusted with the job of conducting audit on the self certification furnished by the Service Providers. TERM Cell will carry out test audit of 10% of the BTS site on random basis and on all cases where there is a public complaint.

* Telecom Engineering Centre (TEC) has revised the Test Procedure for measurement of EMF for verification of EMF compliance for BTS towers in accordance with new standards.

* For non-compliance of EMF standards, a penalty of Rs. 5 lakhs is liable to be levied per BTS per Service Provider.

* The BTS site details i.e. self certification, registration with TERM Cell, test results etc. is proposed to be provided on DoT web site for General Public information.

Mobile Handsets

* All the new design of mobile handsets shall comply with the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) values of 1.6 W/kg averaged over 1 gram of human tissue w.e.f. 1st Sept. 2012.

* The mobile handsets with existing designs which are compliant with 2.0 W/kg averaged over 10 gram of human tissue, will continue to co-exist up to 31st August 2013. From 1st Sept. 2013, only the mobile handsets with revised SAR value of 1.6 W/kg would be permitted to be manufactured or imported in India.

* SAR value information display on the mobile handsets like IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) display. The information on SAR values to be made available to the consumer at the point of sale.

* Mobile hand set manufactured and sold in India or imported from other countries shall be checked on random basis for compliance of SAR limit after TEC SAR Laboratory is set up by end of 2012. Test results from international accredited labs will be acceptable in the interim period.

* The manufacturers in India will provide self declaration of SAR value of the handset.

* Suitable amendments in the Indian Telegraph Rule under Indian Telegraph Act 1985 are being enacted in support of ensuring compliance of new SAR values for handsets.

* Manufacturer’s mobile handset booklet will contain safety precautions.

* All cell phone handsets sold in the market in India will comply with relevant standards and shall be available in hand free mode.

SAR Test Laboratory:

* SAR Test Laboratory is being set up in Telecom Engineering Centre for testing of SAR value of mobile handsets imported/ manufactured in India.

New National SAR Standards from Telecom Engineering Centre

* National SAR standards from Telecom Engineering Centre are being finalized.

Measuring Instruments:

* DoT is procuring EMF radiation measuring instruments for TERM cell units.

* Outsourcing for EMF radiation measurement for BTS towers is also being considered.

Expert Group Study:

* A scientific study in India-specific context is being undertaken jointly by Dept. of Telecom and Dept. of Science & Technology in collaboration with ICMR, MOEF & Min of Science & Technology to derive norms based on credible scientific evidence taking into account diversity of Indian social context.

Guidelines to State Government

* Department of Telecommunication has released Guidelines covering BTS Towers so that some consistency gets evolved on setting up of BTS towers. Guidelines have been placed on DoT website.

Guidelines for Consumers

Guidelines for consumers on Mobile handset usage have been issued and hosted on DoT Web site (www.gov.dot.in) for general public awareness.

Some of them are:

1. Keep distance – Hold the cell phone away from body to the extent possible.

2. Use a headset (wired or Bluetooth) to keep the handset away from your head.

3. Do not press the phone handset against your head. Radio Frequency (RF) energy is inversely proportional to the square of the distance from the source — being very close increases energy absorption much more.

4. Limit the length of mobile calls.

5. Use text as compared to voice wherever possible.

6. Put the cell phone on speaker mode.

7. When your phone is ON, don’t carry it in chest/breast or pants pocket. When a mobile phone is ON, it automatically transmits at high power every one or two minutes to check (poll) the network.

Radiation Booklet

* A booklet addressing possible queries from mobile telecom users on radiation-related issues along with other informative inputs is also being placed on DoT website.

TEC Test Procedures Document for Service Providers and Term Cell Units

* TEC has revised the Test Procedure for measurement of EMF elaborating the methodology, calculations, measurements and report formats for verification of EMF compliance for BTS towers in accordance with new standards effective from 1st Sept. 2012. This will be applicable for all Mobile Service Providers and Term Cell Units to verify compliance.

Department of Telecommunications, Ministry of Communications & IT has ensured that the new EMF Radiation standards get implemented through close co-ordination with the industry.

The guidelines underline the Government’s efforts at providing the best possible Telecom services across the country without compromising on public safety and human health.

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India Adopts Health Warnings & U.S. Mobile Phone Standards

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India Adopts Health Warnings & U.S. Mobile Phone Standards

India adopts the U.S. cell phone radiation standard, issues health warnings and requires safety precautions in user manuals. Local and state governments in the U.S. should issue precautionary health warnings now to protect cell phone users.

India just adopted the U.S. cell phone handset radiation standard. The Indian government also issued precautionary health warnings about cell phone use and is requiring manufacturers to include safety precautions in user manuals. (1)

Now more than 1.3 billion cell phone subscribers in seven countries will be covered by the U.S. cell phone radiation standard including the U.S., India, Canada, New Zealand, Bolivia, Taiwan, and South Korea. (2)

Moreover, thirteen nations and the European Union have issued precautionary health warnings about the need to limit exposure to cell phone radiation. The countries include Austria, Britain, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Russia, Sweden, and Switzerland.

Although the CTIA’s (i.e., the wireless industry association) lawsuit over San Francisco’s cell phone “right to know” law has not been resolved, the association has stated in public meetings and in courtrooms that it is fine if governments post precautionary health warnings about cell phone radiation on public property or on government web sites. Thus, local and state governments should take immediate action to protect consumers, especially children, from cell phone radiation by issuing health warnings in these public venues.

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13 Tips to Reduce Cell Phone Radiation Exposure

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Here are some simple tips to reduce your exposure to harmful cell phones radiation:

1. Use speakerphone or text messaging

To keep the phone away from your head, use speakerphone or send text messaging instead. Every inch you can get the phone away from your body reduces the amount of radiation you are absorbing.
2. Use wired headset
If your cell phone comes with wired headset, you may use it to keep the phone further away from your body. Although the headset may still transmit radiation through the wire – but it is a very low level.

If that is a concern, you can buy a ferrite bead for just a few bucks at most electronic stores. It attaches to the wire and it absorbs any radiation traveling through the wire, thus reduce your exposure to cell phone radiation.

3. Do not wear Bluetooth device all the time
Bluetooth wireless earphones will emit certain levels of radiation. Even it’s far less than cell phone radiation, but most people wear the bluetooth device all the time.

If you use Bluetooth device, switch it from ear to ear so this may reduce your exposure on one side. Take it from your ear when you’re not on the phone.

4. Make the switch
If you really want to place the phone near your head, switch ears regularly while talking on the cell. This may limit prolonged exposure on one side, which has been linked to increased risk of brain cancer on the side of the head where the phone is usually held.

5. Go offline mode
When the phone is not used, set to offline or flight mode, which will turn off its transmitter. This still allows you to use the phone to play games or listen to music.

6. Avoid using phone in tight space
Don’t make or take calls in elevator, train or car. Moreover, using a cell phone while driving will also endanger you and other users’ safety.

7. Notice the phone signal
Do not use the phone when the signal is weak, or when you’re traveling at higher speeds in a car or train. Because this will automatically boosts power to maximum as the phone trying to connect to a new relay antenna.

8.Do not put the phone near your bed
You probably need phone alarm to help you get up early. But do not put the phone near your bed, particularly near your head position. Electromagnetic fields can reduce the production of melatonin in the body which may lead to an increase risk of cancer and other diseases.

9.Do not put your phone in the pocket
A recent study found that men who carried their mobile phone in their pockets had 25 percent lower sperm count than those who did not carry a phone. Different parts of the body absorb different intensities of radiation, and testicular tissue may be more vulnerable.

10.Keep the distance while connecting
Do not hurry place cell phone near your ear while your call is connecting. At that time, the phone is sending out a strong signal.
Spend even less time on your PDA
Gadgets such as BlackBerry, iPhone, and Treo produce higher emissions than cell phones because they are rely on battery to power up things such as e-mail, internet connection and a color screen.
11.Read the phone manual

Most cell phones come with safety manual which tell their consumer to not keep the phone next to their head, or even in their pocket.

Apple iPhone 4 says keep at least 5/ 8 inch from the body when transmitting. And the BlackBerry Bold suggests at least 0.98 inches from the body when the BlackBerry device is in use.

If you keep it less than they suggested, the manufacturer can not guarantee the amount of radiation that you are absorbing will be a safe level.
12.Keep phone conversations as short as possible
If your conversation is going to be long, use a landline. One study found that after two minutes, the brain’s electrical activity can be altered for at least an hour. Don’t forget, the risk of brain tumors start at a relatively low level of cumulative lifetime radiation exposure.

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RMC Steps Up Measures to Combat Killer Radiation

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Complete submission to charm of technological wrap has overwhelmingly eased our lives so much so that the buzz about its harmful consequences on health propagates a slow start.

Foot-tapping jingles of cellular companies, beguiling customers with lucrative free talk time offers; need to be given a second thought in the wake of rising incidence of health hazards caused by its radiations.

On 31st May, 2011, International Agency for Research on Cancer, a part of WHO designates cell phones as “possible human carcinogen”. Evidences, in varied case studies, affirming the increase of Glioma and Acoustic Neuroma brain cancer in people with proximity to mobile phone towers, prodded the Government to implement stricter radiation norms at national level, in effect from 1st September, 2012.

According to new guidelines, the exposure limits for base station (BTS) emission have been lowered to one tenth of the existing exposure. Now the permissible radiation levels in India, 0.45 W / meter square for 900 MHz, still surpasses the International Standard of 0.001 W / meter square accorded safe for 24×7 exposures (Bio Initiative Report 2007).

The mobile handsets with Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) limit of 1.6 W / kg over 1 gram of human tissue is the new norm with exposure limit to be displayed on handsets made mandatory.

Ranchi Municipal Corporation framed guidelines, for installation of cell phone towers in February 2008, was lying sedate and ineffectual. In coincidence with Centre’s move, the RMC has pitched up its activity pulse in issuing notices to the service providers of 356 BTS towers in the capital for furnishing relevant papers to reign in unauthorised installation of mobile towers. Prima facie it appears that hundreds of mobile towers in the capital and the state have not obtained the due sanction of the concerned authorities. RMC records show only 36 applications lying for approval for cellular towers.

Flouting the safety norms, cluster of BTS towers mounted on roof tops and more than one cellular tower erected within one km of existing ones near residential areas, schools and hospitals are commonly spotted. It intensifies overlapping of high radiation fields grievously affecting the health of humans, animals and birds. People living within 50-300 metre radius of cell phone masts are in harmful high radiation zone. Dangerously low, 10 ft to 20 ft BTS towers have been installed defying the safe prescribed height of 50 ft to 200 ft. Ratu, Upper Bazar, Circular Road and Lalpur are affected areas.

Mobile service operators self assess the BTS transmission in compliance with the TERM rules. Yielding to temptations like increasing radiation level of BTS towers to upgrade coverage, thus cutting expenditure of mounting more towers is not ruled out. However, the Inter Ministerial Committee recommendations empower the Urban Development Authority to keep a tab on cellular installations, their structural safety clearances and low power transmissions. The CEO, RMC, Deepankar Panda informs, “Purchase of radiation detectors is imminent. BIT Mesra has been roped in for expert consultation with vigil radiation checks being outsourced to them”.

Record unnatural death of crows, last year, reported in several pockets of Jharkhand was imputed to hazardous EMF radiation of BTS towers, growing exponentially and haphazardly. Dr Shekhar Kesri, Cancer Specialist, Apollo Ranchi speaking on the jeopardy, says, “Cases of Lymphoma and Brain tumour have gone up in Jharkhand. Rise in the number of children suffering from this fatal disease raises concern. Though no direct scientific evidence, but definitely an inter-relation between disease and harmful radiation exists.”

Mobile subscriber base in Jharkhand is nearly 1.5 crores and catering to them are 8 service providers.

Large number of cellular towers in the state emphasise the need for drastic abatement measures against harmful EMF radiation. Radio waves emitted by handsets and towers cause heating of human head and body fluid.

Disease symptoms arise due to related changes in electrical activity of the brain. Risk factors are enhanced 5 times in children and pregnant women.

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Scientists To Study Earth’s Radiation Belt With High-Tech Satellite Instruments

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NASA is launching twin satellites on August 24 from Cape Canaveral, Florida that will conduct the most intimate study to date of the Van Allen Radiation Belts that envelop Earth. The two-year Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP) mission will study the extremes of space weather and should help scientists improve space weather forecasting.

Space weather doesn’t seem like a big deal to most people on Earth, but, according to one researcher from University of Iowa , everybody is affected by it. Pick up your cell phone to make a call; take a flight on your next vacation; step outside to catch a glimpse of the northern lights; these are all instances where you become affected by space weather. And changes in space weather can wreak havoc on satellites, power grids, and GPS systems.

The Van Allen Radiation Belts, named after UI astrophysicist James A. Van Allen who discovered the phenomena in 1958 during the flight of the Explorer 1 satellite, are two donut-shaped regions of high-energy particles trapped by the Earth’s magnetic field. When first discovered, the belts were thought to remain fairly stable. However, future observations revealed that these structures are not nearly as stable as believed. And even now, the reasons why are a mystery.

The twin satellites are scheduled for a 4:07 a.m. (EST) lift-off on August 24 aboard a United Launch Vehicle Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral. A host of highly-sensitive instruments equipped to the satellites will aid in the study of the radiation belts.

Harlan Spence, director of the University of New Hampshire (UNH) Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space, is leading the studies involving the Energetic Particle, Composition, and Thermal Plasma (ECT) instrument. Roy Torbert, director of UNH‘s Space Science Center (SSC), is a co-leader on the Electric and Magnetic Field Instrument Suite and Integrated Science (EMFISIS) experiment. The principal investigator for the EMFISIS instrument is Craig Kletzing, F. Wendell Miller Professor of physics and astronomy in the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Teams from the University of Minnesota , the New Jersey Institute of Technology , and the National Reconnaissance Office will operate three other instruments aboard the twin satellites, each of which weighs 1,455 pounds and were built for NASA at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland.

Collectively, the five instrument suites will give scientists the most precise measurements to date of the high-energy particles and magnetic and electric fields and waves in this near-Earth region of space where space weather occurs.

Space weather is largely affected by activity from the Sun, including solar storms (coronal mass ejections) which can be massive and pose serious threats to electrical systems in our orbit and here on the surface of the planet. The RSBP mission will enable a better understanding of space weather conditions and allow scientists to better predict the severity of such events, events that can not only disrupt electrical systems, but also pose a danger to human health.

“There can be a solar storm and the radiation belts will get pumped up, or nothing happens, or they’ll nearly disappear entirely. That’s puzzling, and right now we don’t understand enough to say why it’s the case,” said Spence at a pre-launch press conference held on August 20.

To gain a better understanding of the radiation belts and how it affects space weather, the dual satellites will chase each other in common, highly-elliptical orbits to achieve simultaneous spatial and temporal measurements of the particles and the magnetic and electrical fields and waves.

“We know we can’t study the particles in the absence of the electromagnetic fields that are causing them to change,” noted Spence. “Until RBSP there has never been a comprehensive, coordinated investigation with two spacecraft simultaneously.”

Spence’s ECT suite is comprised of three main instruments including the Magnetic Electron Ion Spectrometer, which has four versions on each satellite. Other instruments in the ECT suite include the Helium Oxygen Proton Electron spectrometer and the Relativistic Electron Proton Telescope. The ECT suite was developed with the aid of several organizations including the Los Alamos National Laboratory , Southwest Research Institute (SWRI ), The Aerospace Corporation , and the University of Colorado .

Besides developing partners, the ECT suite also has a host of partners, including teams from Dartmouth College, UCLA , NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, and NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center, as well as international partners at the University of Alberta, the British Antarctic Survey, and the Office National d’Études et de Recherches Aerospatiales (ONERA) in Toulouse, France.

“The EMFISIS suite will measure the electric and magnetic fields and waves that both result from radiation belt particle interactions and have a significant effect on both the energization and loss of these particles. Having two satellites in the same orbit gives us new insights into these processes and how they change in time and space,” said Torbert at a pre-launch press conference.

The RSBP mission is the first such mission to be launched by NASA in more than two decades. Like other NASA projects, this mission has two main reasons for existing: it will gather practical information and it is a part of mankind’s continuing exploration of space.

“The practical reason is: that’s a part of space that we utilize. The outer radiation belts are where all our communication satellites exist, the various things that make sure that GPS works, as well as telephone communications,” Kletzing said. “They can be affected by these particles, and, in fact, it has happened that those satellites have actually been knocked out by radiation.”

“So, understanding these effects and how they happen and, hopefully, get beyond to where we can do some level of prediction is a very important practical reason,” he added.

“Additionally, the various manned missions that NASA has planned to go beyond the Space Station to places like the moon or Mars also require transiting through this region,” noted Kletzing. “So, understanding the right time to go—when the particles are fewest so that you don’t impact human health is a very important thing to understand.”

The most exciting part of this project is that this is the first time NASA is launching twin satellites; two identical satellites, each carrying the same sets of instrumentation, that will offer scientists for the first time to get comparable evidence from two sources instead of relying on just one, according to Kletzing.

The UI’s EMFISIS instruments will measure the various kinds of waves the spacecraft will encounter. UI’s Kletzing and co-investigator Bill Kurth, also of UI, built the Waves and search coil magnetometer sections for the EMFISIS suite. The UI also worked with the Goddard Space Flight Center, which built a magnetometer as a part of the UI instrument suite. UNH provided the computer that controls all of the EMFISIS measurements.

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New Radiation Norms: Manufacturers Have to Phase Out Old Phones By August 2013

http://www.emfnews.org/headset.html

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A copy of a note by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to mobile phone manufacturers, which was reviewed by Mint, gives the manufacturers a year more before their handsets that are not in line with the new radiation norms are phased out.

This is the latest in an ongoing attempt by the department to make mobile handset manufacturers conform to the new radiation norms. So far, the September 1 deadline persists for new models to comply with the Specific absorption rate (SAR) norms, while older phones can do so till August 31, 2013.

As per a notice by DoT in January, the SAR value had been revised to 1.6 watts per kilogram from 2 watts per kilogram (W/kg).

The revision came following a recommendation of an internal committee of the government comprising officials and experts from the DoT, the Indian Council of Medical Research, the Department of Biotechnology, the Ministries of Health, and the Ministry of Environment and Forests. The committee then submitted its recommendations in November.

As part of the new reforms, every handset manufactured in or imported to the country will be monitored for its compliance with the SAR limit, and no handsets with SAR count above the permissible limit will be allowed to be sold.

Radiation from mobile phones has been a topic of active discussion in the country, especially at a time when the device is so popular. We had reported earlier that there was a growing need for the government to tackle the mobile phone radiation problem on a war footing.

Some movement has already been initiated by the Delhi government with the impending introduction of radiation tags on mobile phones. In fact, in one of our earlier reports we had stated that beginning from September 1 this year, there would be more rigorous checks on the electromagnetic radiation emitted by mobile phones.

The SAR essentially measures at the rate at which the body absorbs energy when exposed to a radio frequency electromagnetic field or electronic devices using radio spectrum. On the topic of the extension of the deadline for old phones, the report further quoted Pankaj Mohindroo, National President of the Indian Cellular Association lobby group as saying, “”This is just keeping in mind the (18-24 month) product life cycle of the existing models. The government has carefully considered the demand and supply position of mobile phones with the revised SAR value, time required to launch new models of mobile phones and phasing out of existing models.””

Recently, it had also been reported that at an international conference organised by The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM), Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal confirmed that the cellphone tower radiation levels in the country are well within the prescribed limits; hence, safe.

Post their respective deadlines, only those phones complying with the revised SAR value of 1.6W/kg would be allowed to be manufactured or imported in the country.

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What Makes Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) Dangerous?

http://www.emfnews.org/headset.html

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Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) is the generated byproduct of electricity traveling through electronic devices. Electronic devices develop a field of radiation or, an Electromagnetic Field (EMF) that is strongest when closest to the source and reduces in intensity when moving away from the source. Increasing the current within the source will directly increase the strength of the field.

Industry experts recommend that exposure to these fields should be less than 2 milliGauss (mG), the measurement of EMFs. For devices such as laptops, these levels can reach up to 175 mG, when processing and computing.

EMF radiation can be dangerous because it can often change field direction, creating a vibration within the tissues of the body.

EMF Vibration Impacts

A vibrating Electromagnetic Field (EMF) touching the body generates heat and cell mutation. In fact, this phenomenon works the same way as a microwave by vibrating molecules together and generating enough heat to cook food. Long term exposure to EMF vibrations can lead to serious health concerns.

With increased temperatures, both male and female fertility can be affected. Studies over the past 20 years show that long-term exposure to high levels of EMFs can mutate cells, burn skin, cause DNA cellular breakdown and many other health problems including cancer.

Conclusion
Most EMFs are fields that vibrate the human body’s cells. This vibration can not only cause heating up of cells, but also manipulate the cells in other dangerous ways.

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