Over the course of the past decade, the awareness regarding EMF (electromagnetic field) radiation has grown immensely. Still, a large majority of us don’t yet realize just how much radiation we’re subjected to on a daily basis.
Take a look around you right now. Notice how many electronic devices are within your reach. Your cellphone? Your tablet? Your desktop computer? Now take a look around the room and count how many electronic components are with you there. Your TV? A fan or air-conditioning unit?
All those appliances are creating invisible electromagnetic fields that you are being subjected to right now.
Besides that, there are people that work in jobs whose nature renders them even more susceptible to the adverse EMF effects, because they’re more directly exposed to electromagnetic fields. We’re talking about industrial machinery, scanners of all sorts, cell towers, etc.
If you don’t educate yourself on the effects EMF can have, your health and general well-being might be at risk. With that in mind, we’ll explore the basics of EMF shielding and the assorted equipment you might need for it!
What Is EMF in the First Place?
Before we go any further, for those not in the know – just what is EMF in the first place? This acronym stands for electromagnetic field (EMF) radiation. This is pretty much a catch-all term for various kinds of electromagnetic emitters. The energy radiated by smartphones is also within the same category.
Most often, these are signals which appear in waves; meaning they have varying wavelengths and frequencies, like any wave in physics would. And these are two main parameters by which we categorize distinct electromagnetic waves, and how dangerous or benign they are.
EMF Shielding – We Need to Safeguard Ourselves!
Seeing as we’ve already established that a lot of EMF exposure can have serious cancerogenic properties and thus harmful health effects on people; everyone would do well to conduct themselves in a way that minimizes exposure to electromagnetic waves. But how do you do this?
Luckily, there are plenty of EMF shielding products out there; items that make use of different types of shielding materials in order to neutralize EMF energy as much as possible.
Once you examine where electromagnetic waves come from, you’ll find that avoiding their sources is next to impossible in the modern world. Basically, every single piece of technology that everyone has in their households is somehow tied to EMF, and makes use of its frequencies. If you’re reading this article on a computer or a smartphone – you’re being exposed to the electromagnetic waves they’re emitting as we speak.
Wireless Internet works on the basis of EMF; as do Bluetooth and other types of data-transferring connections. If you’re sharing information without using a cable, you’re definitely working with electromagnetic waves.
And that’s just basic household exposure we’re talking about. But if you’ve got a home or a job near the infrastructure for power grids or a cellphone tower; you’re looking at much more exposure than that.
Unfortunately, the electronic devices that we own today are simply not designed to provide protection from EMF to their users. Often enough, they work at incredibly high frequencies; this means that the radiation can easily go through human skin and tissue. But if you take the needed steps for EMF shielding, you will able to reduce the health risks by a very significant margin.
How Is the Shielding Level Measured?
Shielding levels are measured and indicated with decibel. We all know the term decibel. We know it as the unit used to measure the intensity of a sound. It is not only for sound. It is also used to measure the power level of an electrical signal by comparing it with a given level on a logarithmic scale.
So, how is decibel used in relation to EMF? Or we can better say; in relation to EMF shielding materials? When you research which EMF shielding fabric to buy you will come across the term decibel. In the test reports of the materials decibels will be used as the unit for measuring EMF attenuation. EMF attenuation is the shielding effectiveness of the shielding product.
Decibel is the relationship between two measured numbers. Simply said and in relation to shielding materials: it measures the difference between the EMF level before using the shielding material and the level after.
With a shielding attenuation of 0 dB, an electromagnetic wave is let through completely. An attenuation of 10 dB means that 10 percent of the original intensity is transmitted. At20 dB attenuation is retained 99% at 30 dB 99.9%. You can find the measurements in the chart below:
What Materials Are Used for EMF Shielding?
There are plenty of different designs for EMF protective devices out there. Interestingly enough, the first one wasn’t designed decades ago – but centuries ago. Michael Faraday invented his now-famous Faraday Cage all the way back in the early 19th century. And all of the products that serve to reduce EMF radiation have been working on his principles ever since.
These days, you can buy all sorts of radiation protection materials that you can use to shield from adverse wavelengths and signals in general. But we should clear something right off the bat – it’s not really possible to completely block all EMF signals; though you can significantly reduce human exposure to their effects.
Why is that? Well, the only way to completely steer clear of EMF is to not use any kind of electric device at all. Remember – your cell phone uses EMF for some of its most basic functions, like calls and messages. And even if you were prepared to relinquish yourself of contemporary electronic commodities; they’re still all around you and used by other people.
So, you should instead use protective materials to minimize the damage rendered by your own devices. There are different materials used for this, and we’ll describe the most oft-used ones in detail below. Their protective capacities largely depend on a couple of factors; most specifically the material’s electrical resistance. Usually, these materials are made out of a mesh that’s metallic and conductive to electricity; while also being thin enough to be molded into whatever kind of fabric you need.
One of the most common EMF protective materials you’ll encounter is mylar. And the reason for that is simple – it’s an incredibly effective EMF shield if you place it somewhere between the radiation source and yourself. Naturally, as we’ve already mentioned above – it won’t block EMF signals by 100%, as your electricity-based devices wouldn’t work then. Instead, it blocks radiation by 90%.
In other words, it’s inexpensive, lightweight, and quite convenient as an EMF radiation deflector. You’ll find it comes in varying degrees of thickness and quality; there are plenty of different mylar-based products to choose from. Though, the most commonly bought item of this sort is the mylar blanket.
Next up, we’ve got the copper mesh – certainly one of the most widely used EMF deflecting materials in the industry. One of its best qualities is its versatility when it comes to blocking different EMF frequencies. Regardless of the wavelength in question, copped items will be successful in blocking this radiation by 95% efficiency.
Interestingly enough, copper differs from other EMF shielding materials by one key trait – unlike the others, its thickness doesn’t really matter when it comes to its effectiveness. If you’re using a copper mesh, you only need to worry about one thing; not having any holes in the fabric. Otherwise, if there are holes bigger than the wavelength of the EMF (and that’s less than microscopic) you won’t be able to achieve successful shielding.
In order to protect yourself against harmful radiation, we advise putting the copper mesh between the source of the EMF emissions and yourself. This doesn’t necessarily mean obstructing your line of sight or other senses, though. Some copper mesh films are designed specifically for you to use on your windows; letting in light while blocking out EMF simultaneously.
While copper is quite effective, unfortunately it’s also one of the pricier options around; making it not as affordable for the common user – it’s more often utilized by institutions with budgets, like health facilities.
For our penultimate choice, we’ve got a material that’s got value beyond mere EMF shielding – and that’s silver. Though, we should say right away; silver fabrics are definitely a material that’s used for EMF shielding even in industry-grade conditions, let alone ordinary households.
You’ll find plenty of fabrics that are made out of nylon or other synthetics but are imbued with silver, making them perfect choices when it comes to EMF protection. Though, if they’re not treated with nano-silver technology, these materials tend to lose their silver properties over time, as the metal washes out.
Still, you can use silver-treated fabrics for all kinds of things, from makeshift Faraday cages and window drapes to garment liners for personal protection. And just like jewelry made from silver, it’s perfectly safe for skin contact.
Lastly, but definitely not least – we’ve got aluminum. Remember the radiation emitted by your phones, that we’ve talked about as one of the most common forms of EMF? Well, the most effective shielding materials for this type of radiation is aluminum. You can easily use it to have a makeshift Faraday cage; one that will make sure no radiation reaches you and enters your body. And we haven’t even gotten to one of the biggest practicalities of aluminum – it’s incredibly affordable!
You can easily test and see how effective it is for yourself. Aluminum foil is ridiculously easy to obtain, and you can get it during grocery shopping at the local store. Just take a piece of aluminum foil that’s large enough to wrap around your smartphone. Do so, and then use another phone to call your own cell. Amazingly, you’ll see that the call doesn’t go through – aluminum foil completely blocks the phone’s signal and other electromagnetic waves! Yes, we’re talking about a proper Faraday cage, through and through.
And the example of supermarket aluminum foil gives you another clue about its properties; the thickness of the material doesn’t matter. Even the super-thin foil people use for food wrapping will be enough, as long as there are no holes in the sheet.
The applications of this material for radiation blocking are both numerous and ever-present. For instance, if you’ve got a microwave, take a look inside. There’s an incredibly thin sheet of aluminum mesh in there. That’s because the microwave oven is designed so that no adverse effects from EMF breach through its confines and reach the nearby users.
Of course, aluminum isn’t a radiation sponge; it won’t absorb EMF radiation, but simply block it. With that in mind, remember to place the aluminum foil between the EMF source and yourself, or other people you want to protect.
As you can see, there are plenty of ways you can safeguard yourself and your loved ones from the adverse effects of electromagnetic radiation. Unfortunately, a lot of the theories related to EMF are dubbed conspiracy theories; mostly by interest groups connected to electronic hardware manufacturers.
However, the science regarding EMF and its effects is pretty clear – taking precautionary steps is definitely advisable. We hope this guide was useful to you and that you found out more on how EMF shielding products and materials work. Thanks for your attention and stay safe, folks.