Investigation of Radiation from iPhone and Other Devices


Statement of Purpose

The purpose of this experiment is to determine how much radiation is emitted from different types of iPhones in both texting mode and calling mode, and at different distances. The control group is the iPhone X in calling mode from two centimeters away, the independent variable is the type of iPhone, and the dependent variable is the amount of radiation emitted.

Background Research

Radiation is energy radiated or transmitted in the form of electromagnetic waves, rays, or subatomic particles, especially high-energy particles that cause ionization (Radiation Exposure, 2017).

Radiation is predominantly classified as ionizing or non-ionizing. Ionizing radiation is a form of radiation with enough energy to detach tightly bound electrons from the orbit of an atom, causing the atom to become ionized (Ionizing radiation, 2018). Radionuclides are unstable elements that can become more stable by emitting ionizing radiation (Ionizing radiation health effects, 2016). There are a few different forms of ionizing radiation, such as ultraviolet radiation, gamma rays, and X-rays from the electromagnetic spectrum and subatomic particles including beta particles, alpha particles, and neutrons (Crosta, 2016).

All these types are induced by unstable atoms, which have a surplus of mass or energy. For the atoms to reach a stable state, they must release the additional mass or energy in the form of radiation (Types of Ionizing Radiation, n.d.).

Non-ionizing radiation is lower energy radiation that is located at the low end of the electromagnetic spectrum. It is called non-ionizing radiation because it does not have enough energy to ionize, or completely remove an electron from an atom or molecule.

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Some types of non-ionizing radiations can generate heat, and some types are even visible. A few forms of non-ionizing radiation include radio waves, microwave radiation, infrared light, visible light, and longwave, or low-frequency, radiation (Crosta, 2016). Lasers often operate in the visible, UV, and IR frequencies. They stimulate molecules and atoms and cause them to generate light and concentrate it into a beam of radiation. Non-ionizing radiation is found in a broad range of occupational environments and can constitute a considerable health hazard to potentially exposed workers if not properly managed (Non-ionizing radiation, n.d.).

In healthcare, radiology is used to diagnose diseases using imaging technologies. These technologies are based on radiation. Common techniques include magnetic resonance imaging, ultrasound, computed tomography scans, fluoroscopy, and X-rays (Crosta, 2016). Exposure to small amounts of ionizing radiation can increase the risk of cancer. An abundance of radiation in a short period can lead to burns and radiation sickness. Side effects of radiation sickness are nausea, impaired tissue and organ function, weakness, skin redness, and hair loss. If the exposure to radiation is large enough, it can cause premature aging and in some cases, death (Radiation Exposure, 2017).

Non-ionizing radiation is all around us in daily life. Some objects used every day that emit non-ionizing radiation include microwave ovens, radio antennas, lasers, ultraviolet lights, televisions, and cellphones. Although non-ionizing radiation is not as hazardous as ionizing radiation, there are still minor health effects. Some forms of non-ionizing radiation can cause damage to tissues if exposed too much. Other symptoms include increased risk of damage to the skin and eyes, localized heating, or photochemical reactions, which can transpire with possibly perpetual harm (Non-ionizing Radiation, n.d.). For instance, ultraviolet light from the sun can cause skin burns, and it is noted to cause some skin cancers. Some ultraviolet waves have an energy that is powerful enough to prompt a structural change in atoms (Radiation Exposure, 2008). Radiation provides various benefits for healthcare, but it must be used correctly (Crosta, 2016).

Radiofrequency alludes to the rate of oscillation of electromagnetic radio waves in the range of three kilohertz (kHz) to 300 gigahertz (GHz), as well as the alternating currents carrying the radio signals. This frequency band is suitable for communications transmission and broadcasting. Radiofrequency is used in many fields, but it refers to the frequency band at which wireless telecommunications signals are being broadcasted and transmitted. The band is separated into different parts, which then are assigned to different technology categories. For instance, the very high-frequency band is used for FM radio and TV broadcasts. Many electronic communication devices are in the ultra-high frequency band. This is where land radio, TV, Bluetooth, and mobile phones are placed (Radiofrequency, 2018).

Cell phones emit radiofrequency radiation. They are concerned to increase the risk of cancer and might affect brain glucose metabolism (Cohen, 2018). The possible health outcomes are unknown and studies show inconsistent results. One study showed increased glucose metabolism in the region of the brain close to the antenna compared with tissues on the opposite side of the brain, and another study found reduced glucose metabolism on the side of the brain where the phone was used (Geary, 2010). Draft studies which were done by the National Toxicology Program showed that high exposure to radiofrequency radiation resulted in tumors in male rodents, but not the females. The exposure levels utilized in the studies were higher and equal to the highest level authorized for local tissue exposure in cell phone emissions (Cha, 2018).


If the radiation emitted from three different iPhones is measured (iPhone X, iPhone SE, iPhone 6s), then the iPhone X, from two centimeters away, in calling mode, will emit the most radiation.

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Investigation of Radiation from iPhone and Other Devices. (2022, Aug 09). Retrieved from

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