EMF Health-effects Research

Thresholds of microwave-evoked warmth sensations in human skin.

Blick DW, Adair ER, Hurt WD, Sherry CJ, Walters TJ, Merritt JH

Bioelectromagnetics 18(6):403-409, 1997

We measured thresholds for microwave-evoked skin sensations of warmth at frequencies of 2.45, 7.5, 10, 35, and 94 GHz. In the same subjects, thresholds of warmth evoked by infrared radiation (IR) were also measured for comparison.

Detection thresholds were measured on the skin in the middle of the back in 15 adult male human subjects at all microwave (MW) frequencies and with IR. Long duration (10-s), large area (327-cm2) stimuli were used to minimize any differential effects of temporal or spatial summation.

Sensitivity increased monotonically with frequency throughout the range of microwave frequencies tested. The threshold at 94 GHz (4.5 +/- 0.6 mW/cm2) was more than an order of magnitude less than at 2.45 GHz (63.1 +/- 6.7 mW/cm2), and it was comparable to the threshold for IR (5.34 +/- 1.07 mW/cm2).

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