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.

1. Power.
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.



  1. It'd be a great method if you were on a diet...but not such a good method if one was on an egg diet! I think I'll stick to my potato scallops!

  2. Who would possibly want to cook an egg using two cell phones? Cell phones can do so much more, and who knows? Maybe one day in the future they will be able to cook stuff. Heck, they can do everything else.

  3. Indeed. I have just been watching a program on the FBI and NSA and their programs to directly monitor the American people's phone and internet communications. Scary stuff. Knowing how far up GWB's fundamental orifice you need to go to find our Prime Minister, it means it will be here too.

  4. Using one or, worse, two while you are driving can cook your goose.

  5. Cool, now that certainly clears it up nicely. Thanks Lee.

  6. Now that T B has gone, we may never locate JH up GWB's orifice again.

  7. I love having an in-house chemist!

  8. What Pauline said - our own consultant!

  9. EGGS-Zactly!

    (the corndog in me couldn't help it)

  10. I cycled through a village yesterday which is conducting a somewhat hysterical campaign against the siting of a mobile telephone mast. The roadside was festooned with bright yellow signs citing phone masts as a health hazard. As I passed each one I shouted 'garbage' (or similar) at the top of my voice. Obviously I had to keep up a good speed to avoid the lynch mob and the shotguns.

    It doesn't really matter how much science you produce, the maleable masses much prefer the to listen to the witch doctors.


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