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NIOSH Testimony on Radiofrequency Radiation by J. D. Millar, December 5, 1986.
NIOSH 1986 Dec; :1-4
This testimony concerned the opinions of NIOSH in regards to occupational exposures to radiofrequency (RF) radiation. Based on available literature the arguments for using a safety factor in recommending RF exposure limits were excellent. NIOSH argued against setting the thresholds for adverse effects at or near SAR levels where death and other extremely severe biological effects occur in animals. It was noted that there was an uncertainty factor and two major points had to be considered in establishing it. The first point concerned research reports in which the SAR was not reported and the orientation of the animal relative to the incident field was not specified. The second point concerned the disagreement between measured SAR values in human volunteers and the predicted SAR values in humans. Setting exposure limits as low as even 2 milliwatts/square centimeter (mW/cm2) did not prevent RF shocks and/or burns. Human contact with long or large, electrically conductive objects measured in RF fields resulted in involuntary startle reactions and/or burns at exposure levels even below 2mW/cm2. NIOSH suggests that the Environmental Protection Agency should consider requiring open circuit voltage measurements between capacitively charged objects in an RF field and surrounding points at ground potential with which people could come in contact. An open circuit, RF voltage of 140 volts is an approximate threshold for RF shocks and burns.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Testimony; Millar-J-D; Radiation-exposure; Radiation-hazards; Safety-research; Occupational-exposure; Threshold-limit-values; Heat-exposure
NTIS Accession No.
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division