ABKnowledge and also Employability science 8, 9 (revised 2009)9Unit D: electric Principles and also Technologies
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Every day, friend use modern technologies that you most likely take because that granted. Things choose the microwave the cooks her meals, the lights that let you view in the dark and the television that entertains you. What do these technologies have in common? They every need electrical energy to work. 

Our require for power is growing. Therefore is the variety of transmission towers and overhead electrical wires in the areas we live. But what if safety time close to the electrical and also magnetic power from high-voltage wires reasons health problems? Thankfully, research shows that it probably doesn’t. At least not in the situation of childhood leukemia. 

High-voltage overhead infection lines bring electricity from electric power plants to transformer substations. Transformer substations room closer to whereby the electricity is actually used.

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Electricity generation, transmission and distribution (Let’s Talk science using picture by mathisworks via iStockphoto).


Power lines are surrounded by one electromagnetic field (EMF) that stretches in all directions. The US national Cancer academy (NCI) explains electromagnetic fields as “invisible areas of energy (also referred to as radiation) that are created by electricity”. The NCI additionally explains the EMFs are developed by countless things, like power lines, electrical wiring and household appliances like televisions and microwaves.

Electromagnetic fields integrate electric fields and also magnetic fields. 


Electric FieldsMagnetic Fields
Produced through voltageProduced by current
The greater the voltage, the stronger the fieldThe better the current, the stronger the field
Exists even when there is no current flowingStrength of field varies through power consumption
Field deserve to do occupational (the speed and direction of corpuscle changes)Field cannot do job-related (speed the particles remain constant)
Are perpendicular to the magnetic fieldAre perpendicular to the electric field
Symbol is ESymbol is B
Measured in volts per metre (V/m) or Newton/coulomb

Measured in tesla (T)

(Newton × Second) /(Coulomb × Meter)

Measured utilizing electrometerMeasured making use of magnetometer

Based top top a graph by EMsafety



Electric ar lines room directed away from positive charged resource charges and toward negative charged source charges. Magnetic ar lines form circular loops roughly the wire. The circulation of energy is directed through the fields from the dried cell towards the load (light bulb).


The EMFs the come native high-voltage strength lines room a lot more powerful than those approximately household appliances. Family members appliances usually produce fields measuring between 0.01 come 0.02 microteslas (µT). If friend stood directly underneath the greatest voltage strength lines though, you could receive a preferably of 100µT. That is 10 000 times together much. 

This amount easily decreases together you relocate away from high voltage lines. For example, in ~ 25 m far from the most powerful line you would receive about 1-2µT. This is still ten to 20 times much more exposure than you would obtain inside the average residence in phibìc America. 

Where friend live in the human being probably renders a huge difference to the EMFs girlfriend receive. World living much from the earth’s magnetic poles get on mean 30µT. World in Canada live closer to the phibìc geomagnetic pole, and can receive up come 60µT.

Did girlfriend know? 

The tesla (T) is the SI (International system of Units) unit used to describe the strength of magnetic fields. The can likewise be represented as kg⋅s−2⋅A−1. Scientists normally report data in millionths of a tesla, or microteslas (µT). 

Some people living near high-voltage strength lines problem about feasible health effects. One worry is that kids could have a higher risk of obtaining cancer together a result of living near a strength line. 

Did you know? 

Magnetic fields are much more likely to permeate the human body than electrical fields. Electrical fields space weakened through obstacles choose walls. Due to the fact that of this, magnetic areas are the component of electromagnetic areas (EMFs) the are frequently studied together a feasible cause of cancer.

Scientists have actually done many studies ~ above this subject. In 2018, a team of scientists studied every the results of 11 vault studies approximately the world. They discovered that there was no clean link between magnetic fields and a child’s possibility of emerging leukemia, a type of cancer. They looked at kids who lived close to and also far away from power lines of every voltages. Lock found almost no differences between them. 

One distinction they did discover was that youngsters who lived really close to high voltage lines had a very little increase in their opportunities of emerging leukemia. This didn’t always happen though. And also children living near stronger magnetic fields did not have actually a stronger opportunity of emerging leukemia. So, scientists don’t understand what causes this problem. 

Childhood cancer doesn’t happen an extremely often. So, it’s an overwhelming to measure up if this number is changing, also a small bit. In Canada, 1,230 kids were diagnosed v leukemia between 2012 and 2016. 

We room exposed to EMFs all the time. From power lines and also appliances to where you live on the Earth. The ar of research into the health impacts of EMFs is still reasonably new. Researchers still have many questions and also a lot to learn around how EMFs from different sources can influence our health.

Media LiteracyWhat elements of EMFs and also high voltage strength lines execute media outlets discuss? Is the discussion detailed too small in scope? Why or why not?Consumerism is stated to it is in a leading factor for the increased need because that energy. What is consumerism and how do famous media add to a culture of consumerism? How should federal government agencies and media outlets interact the potential wellness risks associated with EMFs?Do you feel that potential health risks related come EMFs space effectively interacted to residents?
Media LiteracyWhat facets of EMFs and also high voltage power lines do media outlets discuss? Is the discussion listed too small in scope? Why or why not?Consumerism is stated to be a leading element for the boosted need for energy. What is consumerism and how do popular media contribute to a society of consumerism? How should government agencies and media outlets interact the potential health risks connected with EMFs?Do girlfriend feel that potential health risks related to EMFs room effectively communicated to residents?
Teaching SuggestionsThis post supports teaching and also learning the Health, modern technology & Engineering, Physics and Electricity and also Magnetism related to cancer, electrical fields and also electricity transmission. Concepts introduced include magnetic fields, electrical fields, electricity and also Tesla (T).
Teaching SuggestionsThis write-up supports teaching and learning the Health, modern technology & Engineering, Physics and Electricity and Magnetism pertained to cancer, electric fields and electricity transmission. Ideas introduced encompass magnetic fields, electrical fields, electricity and Tesla (T).

Earth’s Magnetic Fields

An depicted overview from the university of Alicante of whereby the earth’s magnetic field comes from, its stamin in different places, the forces from outer an are that impact it and also more.

Electromagnetic fields: health effects

This section of a civilization Health Organization"s site defines briefly a variety of health concerns about electromagnetic fields and why so far the that is not worried.

EMFs: know your environment

Article indigenous the Canadian Cancer society outlines what us know around EMFs and cancer.

Radiation and also Health: power lines and also electrical appliances

Article native the government of Canada that defines why pagan Canada go not think about nearness to power lines a health risk.

Risk components for childhood leukemia

This web page from the Canadian Cancer culture outlines the recognized and possible risks the childhood leukemia.

Power Transmission: Towers

Hydro Québec web page that reflects a selection of different transmission towers and what every is provided for.

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Watch the the strongest Indoor Magnetic ar Blast Doors of Tokyo Lab large Open (2018)

Description from SmartNews that the greatest magnetic field generated on planet - 1200 teslas - and also a video clip (0:10 min.) that the damage to the lab once it happened.