Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Non-ionising radiation

Non-ionising electromagnetic radiation (NIEMR) is the term used to describe the part of the electromagnetic spectrum covering two main regions, namely optical radiation (ultraviolet (UV), visible and infrared) and electromagnetic fields (EMFs) (power frequencies, microwaves and radio frequencies).

Some common sources of Optical Radiation are the sun, sunbeds and lasers, arc welding (arc eye)

* Exposure of the eyes to UV radiation can damage the cornea and produce pain and symptoms similar to that of sand in the eye. The effects on the skin range from redness, burning and accelerated ageing through to various types of skin cancer.
* High-power lasers can cause serious damage to the eye (including blindness) as well as producing skin burns.

Typical sources of EMFs are generated by electrical supply equipment and telecommunications systems. They include microwaves (i.e. oven). Exposure of people to high levels of EMFs can give rise to acute effects. The effects depend on the frequency, with low frequencies affecting the central nervous system whilst high frequencies causing heating effects that can lead to a rise in body temperature. In reality, these effects are extremely rare and will not occur in most day-to-day work situations

No comments: