Pulsed Radiofrequency Field Effects in Biological Systems

  • James C. Lin


The possibility that pulsed fields produce biological responses other than those elicited by continuous-wave field of the same average power has been conjectured since the early years of research into the biological effect of radiofrequency (RF) energy. However, because of the limited availability of experimental results, few protection guides and exposure standards promulgated by various private organizations or governmental agencies attempted to specify limits to guard against potential hazards of pulsed radiofrequency fields. Indeed, available results have led some to conclude that there is no compelling evidence that pulsed microwave, of the type produced by radar transmitters, cause biological effects not found following exposure under conditions of continuous-wave radiation at the same average power density (Postow and Swicord, 1986). Nevertheless, the accumulation of recent experimental evidence on the biological effects of pulsed and modulated RF field suggests a need to put such interactions in a more meaningful context and a closer examination of the mechanism(s) of such interactions.


Pulse Width Peak Power Pulse Microwave Specific Absorption Rate Peak Power Density 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • James C. Lin
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BioengineeringUniversity of IllinoisChicagoUSA

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