Radio waves range from 300 gigahertz (GHz), or a wavelength of 1 millimeter, to 3 kilohertz (kHz), which corresponds to a wavelength of 100 kilometers. Radio waves are the lowest frequency within the electromagnetic spectrum. The wavelength is the distance from the peak of one wave to the next.
The radio spectrum is typically divided into AM, or amplitude modulation, and FM, frequency modulation. AM waves vary in amplitude but have constant frequency and range from 540 to 1600 kilohertz. FM waves vary in frequency but are constant in amplitude, and range from 88 to 108 megahertz (MHz). Radio waves are not only used in radio transmission, but also in radar, satellite communications, computer networking, television transmission, short wave radio and certain medical procedures, such as magnetic resonance imaging.
Because they are a type of electromagnetic radiation, radio waves travel at the speed of light. The electromagnetic spectrum continues upward after the portion designated as radio waves. The next portion is devoted to microwave radiation, then infrared radiation, then visible light, then ultraviolet radiation and finally X-rays. While the radiation from radio waves is not dangerous to the human body, extremely low frequency radio waves are perceptible to most people. Electromagnetic radiation damage typically begins further up the electromagnetic spectrum, such as with microwave radiation.Learn More
The frequency of blue light with a wavelength of 4,000 Angstroms is 750,000,000 megahertz (MHz). The speed of light divided by wavelength equals frequency; therefore, the answer can be calculated using simple unit conversion.Full Answer >
One of the disadvantages of radio waves is that they cannot transmit a lot of data simultaneously because they're low frequency. In addition, continued exposure to large amounts of radio waves can cause health disorders like leukemia and cancer. Despite these setbacks, technicians have effectively achieved enormous breakthroughs. For example, astronauts use radio waves to transmit information from space to Earth and vice versa.Full Answer >
Radio waves are detected using electrical circuits that receive these electromagnetic signals in an antenna, and then the radio frequencies are modulated through capacitors before emerging as sound in a speaker. Radio waves are normally less than a kilohertz long up to 20 gigahertz. Since humans cannot hear these frequencies, radio signals are often translated into sounds by electrical devices.Full Answer >
In large doses, radio waves, also known as radio frequencies, can disrupt biological functions and break down tissue. There is still much debate over whether or not the radio frequencies emitted from mobile communication devices and the systems that support them pose any danger.Full Answer >