• 07 JAN 06
    • 0

    Lloyd Morgan on DECT phones

    Dear Don,
    I started to respond to your email yesterday, but was unable to finish. Overnight Microsoft auto downloaded a patch which re-booted the computer so I lost what I had written.

    Anyway, please see my responses within your text below.

    Best regards,

    In a message dated 1/5/2006 3:29:17 AM Pacific Standard Time, weblog@emfacts.com writes:

    About a year ago I received two RF meters designed by Alasdair Philips from Powerwatch in the UK that have proved very usefull in determining RF levels in various environments. One is the Acousti-COM (A-COM) Monitor that gives an audible noise to detect the presence of microwave emissions and whether they are pulsed or not. The other is the COM Monitor that measures exposure levels in volts per meter (0.7 to 6.5 v/m). Last November I used them to test several wireless laptops, and their base stations and found emission levels quite low, at least for the two models tested.

    [Lloyd: I have taken some very cursory measurements at a local coffee house with Wi-Fi access and also found quite low emission levels. Because it was just a glance, it is not a definitive finding. Wi-Fi transmissions have about the same power as a cellphone. I’m not sure what power level that laptop wireless modems emit but it is likely to be roughly the same power as the Wi-Fi stations themselves.

    As with all EMF sources, proximity is every thing, as the field decrease as the square of the distance from the source. Both ends, the Wi-Fi station and the laptop are EMF radiation sources. Logically, a user of the laptop is likely to get a larger exposure from the laptop than from the Wi-Fi station dependent on the location of the Wi-Fi station. I would certainly avoid having the laptop on my lap when using a wireless modem.

    Cellphones and DECT phones (see below) will expose people to EMFs that are orders of magnitudes higher than the Wi-Fi or wireless modems, not because they emit less power but because the distance of the cellphone or the DECT phone is much shorter (again the impact of the inverse square law) to the user.]

    They have also been used to test for microwaves in a Darwin legal office, a Hobart office space and to test the effectiveness of wire netting screening in a Brisbane office building facing a nearby (70 meters) array of antennas at the same elevation (levels were about 3.5 V/m before screening). I also used them in Sydney last year around several base stations and found ground levels generally under 1 Volt per meter in the few places tested.

    [Lloyd: If memory serves the Vatican radio leukemia study found that in the region closest to the Vatican radio transmitter (near Rome, but not in the Vatican) had fields around 4 V/m. The study showed a strong correlation of increased risk of leukemia with distance from the transmitter. Though a 1 Volt/m reduction is important, this is still a large field relative to normal ambient fields in major cities.]

    Now only today I had the good fortune to pick up a quantity of Telstra DECT cordless phones and took to opportunity to test each one’s base station for emission levels. These are the sort of wireless phone that could easily be placed on a bedside table or office desk. Very small innocuous looking gadgets.

    However when their base station power transformer is plugged into the mains power point my A-COM Monitor ceased emitting a soft hiss to let out a loud pulsing shrill that pulsed continously for the whole time the base station was energised – not just when the phone is being used. Then using the COM Monitor, I was hitting the red zone at 4 V/m at 1/2 a meter from the base station that cradles the phone when not in use. At this distance one’s head could well be exposed to this level all night long if placed on the bedside table, or for the working day in the office if on the desk. As for any warnings in the instruction pamphlet, all it states is: ” Make sure it is at least 1 metre away from other electrical products to avoid interference.”

    [Lloyd: DECT phones are based on cellphone technology. As a result, just like cellphones they are on when in “standby” mode as well as when they are being used to talk to someone. Cordless phones here in the US are quite diffrent. When in “standby” more US cordless phones are not transmitting.

    For some time, Lennart Hardell and team have been publishing the risk of brain tumors for DECT cordless phones along with analog and digital cellphones. No other studies of DECT phones have ever been published. In the Hardell studies, all 3 phone types show an increased risk for brain tumors from use of these phones. It seems apparent to me that any wireless phone type, whether cellphone, cordless, walkie-talkie, are all likely to increase the risk of brain tumors.

    Here is a summary of Hardell’s DECT phone findings re the risk of brain tumors:
    1) Risk of meningioma, >5 to 10 years of use, >243 cumulative hours of use (243 hours is the median hours of use), OR=1.6; For >10 years of use, OR=2.3.

    2) Risk of acoustic neuroma, >5 to 10 years of use, >243 hours cumulative hours of use, OR=2.0; there was only one case for >10 years of use, allowing for no conclusion of risk or non-risk.

    3) Risk of astrocytoma, >5 to 10 years of use, cumulative hours of use >243 hours, OR=2.6; for >10 years of use, OR=4.1

    4) Risk of high-grade astrocytome, >5 to 10 years of use, >243 cumulative hours of use, OR=3.5; for >10 years of use, OR=5.3

    The instruction pamplet’s warning, “Make sure it is at least 1 metre away from other electrical products to avoid interference.” is a bit disingenuous particularly because Telstra knows about the Hardell findings. Keep other electrical products away but don’t keep yourself away, what crap!]

    It would have been nice to see a warning against placing the base station by a bedhead but everybody knows the stuff is perfectly safe as long as you are not an electrical product – right?

    Now would anyone like to make comment to this list as to what sort of effects might be expected from prolonged exposure to a pulsing 4 v/m microwave field 8+ hours a night while trying to sleep?

    [Lloyd: The dose from non-ionizing radiation is the absorbed power in Watts per kilogram of tissue absorbing the power (also known as Specific Absorption Rate or SAR) multiplied by the time in seconds. The dose units are the total energy absorbed over time per kilogram of tissue in joules per kilogram. The international scientific name for joules per kilogram is Gray (Gy) and is the same units used to measure X-ray and radioactivity doses.

    There is every reason to believe from a careful reading of the cellphone/cordless phone studies and the X-ray (particularly the Israeli study of children cured of scalp ringworm by X-ray therapy) and A-bomb exposure studies, that cellphones/cordless phones are far more brain tumorgenic than X-rays or radioactivity exposures.]

    Perhaps this is the stuff of nightmares?

    [Lloyd: Nightmares are an understatement. Given the ubiquitous use of cellphones, I foresee the largest human pandemic since the black plagues of the 13th century. And, far greater than the potential pandemic from avian flu.

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