Tuesday, 31 July 2007
Exploding the egg myth.
I was asked yesterday by Hann whether I had heard of the story going around the internet regarding using two mobile/cell phones to cook and egg.
As luck would have it, I head read about the issue only last Saturday. It gets written up and debunked here and started life as a satirical article here.
So, on behalf of the curate and his egg, I will give you a summary.
The essence is that if you place two mobile phone, facing each other, on either side of an egg and start a call between the two then nothing will happen for 15min, the egg will be warm after 25min, hot after 45 minutes and cooked after 65min. (I hope you have free call time).
The implicit and explicit question is, if it will do this to an egg, what will it do to your brain?
Well, that’s the story. Now for some facts.
A mobile phone puts out, on average, 0.002 - 0.25 watts. It will vary with distance from the phone tower.
If the two phones were broadcasting at maximum power and if all ( a big call) of this power was being absorbed by the egg, it would take 10 hours to cook an egg. In reality the egg would absorb much less than 10% of the power from the phone.
By comparison, a microwave oven normally emits 600 – 1000 watts.
2. Location, location, location.
Mobile or cell phones do not transmit to each other so putting the two phones on opposite sides of the egg serves no purpose. Mobile phones transmit to and from phone relay towers. To heat an egg you should put it between the phone and the tower, not sandwiched between two phones.
The British TV show, Brainiac, put 100 phones around an egg and got no heating at all.
There are reasons why mobile phones are a health problem (and many reasons why my brain may be poached, scrambled or coddled) but the microwave output is not one of them.