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Can Pets Have Seizures From EMFs? A Short Guide To Understanding Seizures, EMFs & More

Can Pets Have Seizures From EMFs? A Short Guide To Understanding Seizures, EMFs & More

What is an EMF & How Can I Protect My Pet?

Electromagnetic fields (EMF) are invisible to the human eye. However, they can affect your health in many ways. The ElectroMagnetic Fields are emitted from power lines, wireless devices, cellphone towers, wi-fi routers and other sources.

The frequency of the EMFs is measured in hertz (Hz). The electromagnetic field frequency ranges from 30Hz to 300 GHz. Electromagnetic fields above 50 hertz are considered potentially harmful to humans and pets as well.

What are the Signs of a Seizure in Pets?

A seizure is a sudden, uncontrolled electrical disturbance in the brain. One of the main signs of a seizure is a change in a pet’s behavior. Most seizures occur without any warning, but some pets may show a sudden behaviour change before the seizure begins.

Pet owners should be aware of what to do if their pet does have a seizure. A person should never attempt to hold or restrain a pet during a seizure because it could cause injury to the person or injury to the pet. Instead, one should try and position themselves so that they can protect their pet from injuring itself on hard objects and also help them reach fresh air if they are prone to breathing problems during seizures. If you have any concerns about your pets or if you think your pet has had a seizure please contact your veterinarian as soon as

Diagnosing a seizure in a pet is very difficult and there are no laboratory tests to help with the diagnosis. This is because seizures in pets often mimic other, more common neurological problems such as brain tumors and infections.

The following signs may be seen:

  • Shaking Sensations, Convulsions or Tremors, Dilated Pupils, Unusual Behavior or Agitation.

  • The following signs may indicate that your pet is having a seizure:

  • Shaking Sensations

  • convulsions or tremors

  • Dilated Pupils

  • Unusual Behavior or Agitation

  • Aggressive Behavior

  • Unconsciousness

  • Salivation and Vomiting

What is Epilepsy?

Epilepsy is caused by abnormal electric impulses in groups of neurons in the brain. Seizures in epilepsy are classified as either known or unknown. Epileptic seizures are thought to be caused by a lack of neurotransmitters, which regulate the electrical impulses in the brain, causing aberrant electrical activity.

Can Your Pet’s Seizure Be Prevented or Alleviated by Limiting Exposure to EMFs?

The use of wireless devices has increased dramatically in the past decade. In the age of technology, we can’t imagine our lives without these devices. However, wireless technology has a hidden danger that is not visible.

Mobile phone towers and Tetra Masts have been associated with increased incidence of epileptic seizures, and onset of epilepsy. This is related to wireless-form of radio-frequency (RF) EMF radiation.

Where our pets sleep is often not considered. They may be placed in the most convenient area where space is available. however, pets sleeping next to appliances such as fridges, washing machines, dryers and even air purifiers can pose an ElectroMagnetic Field (EMF) hazard. Appliances (when in use) may generate high levels of AC Magnetic Fields. AC Magnetic Field exposure have been associated with increased risk of depression, dementia and even Alzheimer’s Disease. These are all neurological diseases that affect the brain and central nervous system.

Appliances and electrical wiring will also create AC electric fields when in use. The AC electric fields can also emanate out up to 1.5 metres from the source. AC electric fields have also been reported to cause adverse health symptoms for the electrically sensitive.

Pets such as dogs have a shorter lifespan than human beings. Therefore their EMF sensitivity can be more visible within a few years of age. As

Case Study

Two dogs slept next to a fridge and the power outlet for the fridge for several years. AC Magnetic Fields were 2 to 5mG on their dog beds. By the 12th year, the smaller dog started having minor seizures that occurred randomly, affecting the dog’s balance. The dog also showed signs of visible shaking and disorientation. Seizure symptoms subsided within 10 minutes. On the 13th year, the dog suffered a major seizure with multiple organ failures and passed away. The second dog showed no adverse health issues, but on the 14th year, after sleeping next to an air purifier on night, suffered a minor seizure similar to the first dog. It subsided after 5 minutes. AC Magnetic Fields were measured at 8 to 10mG. Building Biology Guideline levels should be under 0.2mG.

Three (3) months later, the dog suffered a sudden loss of balance. The vet diagnosed it as canine vestibular disease. Canine vestibular disease is sudden and doesn’t happen gradually. It is more common in older dogs. It is also called old dog vestibular syndrome or canine idiopathic vestibular syndrome. This indicates that the cause is unknown. It was theorized that long-term exposure to EMFs may be a contributing cause to the dog’s condition based on the various scientific research articles mentioned above and the dog’s sleeping area.

Conclusion & Summary of the Topic

Keep the pet’s sleeping area away from ElectroMagnetic Fields (EMFs) sources such as appliances and wireless devices and routers. Pets are part of the family, and a precautionary approach should also be taken to keep our furry family members safe. Moving sleeping areas at least 2 metres from such sources is advised. If in doubt, hire a Building Biologist to conduct a basic EMF assessment.

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A Guide to How EMF Exposure Causes Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

A Guide to How EMF Exposure Causes Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

Introduction: What is EMF?

EMF is a form of non-ionising radiation.

It’s electromagnetic in nature which means it has both an electric and magnetic components. It also means that EMF waves are not ionising radiation – meaning that they don’t have enough energy to break chemical bonds in molecules or atoms.

What is Dementia?

Dementia is a brain disease that affects a person’s memory, thinking and behavior.

Dementia is a brain disease that affects a person’s memory, thinking and behavior. It is considered as a decline in intellectual abilities. In Alzheimer’s Disease, it appears as an irreversible decline in mental abilities due to the death of brain cells. Dementia can also be caused by stroke or traumatic brain injury, but it can also happen as the result of these diseases:

– Parkinson’s Disease

– Huntington’s Disease

– Multiple Sclerosis

– Frontotemporal Dementia

What is Alzheimer’s Disease?

Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative brain disorder that slowly destroys memory, thinking, and reasoning skills.

The first sign of Alzheimer’s disease is usually forgetting recent events. Later symptoms include problems solving problems and difficulties completing familiar tasks. These symptoms gradually worsen as the disease progresses and can lead to death.

There is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease but medications can help manage some of the symptoms and delay its progression in some cases.

The Effects of EMFs on the Brain

EMF radiation is a type of microwave radiation that is emitted from different types of devices. EMFs disrupt normal electromagnetic signaling in the brain, and can have both short- and long-term consequences.

The most common consequences are memory loss, brain fog, tinnitus, headaches, sleeping disorders, and fatigue.

Electromagnetic Fields (EMFs) also induce the Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, which leads to the degranulation of mast cells and histamine release. Histamine is a powerful mediator of inflammation. This increases the permeability of BBB through oxidative stress.

It has been widely accepted that the Blood Brain Barrier (BBB) is a physiological structure that plays an important role in maintaining brain homeostasis. The BBB acts as protective mechanism by preventing potentially harmful chemicals from reaching the brain, effectively shielding it against their potential toxic effects.

The Blood Brain Barrier is ineffective at shielding the brain against EMFs which are linked to brain inflammation and oxidative stress. Oxidative/nitrosative stress-induced breakdown of the brain’s Blood Brain Barrier (BBB) may be involved in neurodegenerative disorders. Neurodegenerative disorders that are associated are: Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), multiple sclerosis (MS), Huntington’s disease and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

The effects of ElectroMagnetic Fields (EMFs) on the brain are not completely understood yet. There are numerous ongoing research in the field of EMFs, Dementia and Alzheimer’s.

Real World Examples of EMF Exposure and The Risk of Alzheimer’s and Dementia

When clients call Balanced Building Biology, there are often common health characteristics that are present during the initial phone call. Often, the ability to focus or their train-of-thought is disrupted. This can also be true for clients living in a mould-affected home. Often the health symptoms overlap.

Case Study 1

A young couple living in a granny flat were experiencing fatigue and sleep disturbances. However, the male occupant was diagnosed with clinical depression (from his medical doctor) and was taking depression medication.

The basic EMF assessment investigated RF and AC magnetic field exposure levels in living and sleeping areas. Aside from the usual wireless devices and Wi-Fi router, the bedroom area identified a major problem. The split system air conditioner was at the foot of the bed, but its electrical wiring traversed through the wall cavity at the same height as the mattress and pillow area. This produced high AC magnetic fields on their mattress, when the aircon was used at night. The male occupant was closest to the source. The female occupant would often sleep on the sofa instead of the bed. An elderly gentleman had also previously slept in the same bedroom, and is now diagnosed with dementia and depression. 

Case Study 2

A family of four living in a single-story home had one member of the family who was experiencing sleep disturbances, chronic fatigue, memory loss, poor concentration, and a lack of focus. Other members of the family were healthy and not experiencing any adverse health effects.

The affected member of the family was a teenage child. The bedroom was located closest to the highest EMF sources. The sleeping area was affected by wireless radio-frequency (RF) radiation from the Wi-Fi router that was transmitting extremely high RF EMF levels. AC Magnetic Fields were also found to be a problem. The room had a ceiling fan on a relatively low ceiling height. Depending on the type of ceiling fan, extremely high AC Magnetic Fields can be produced. This affected the sleeping area. Subfloor electrical wiring and wall cavity electrical wiring were also identified to pass through the sleeping area contributing to high AC Magnetic Fields when appliances were used in other rooms.

Conclusion: How To Protect Yourself From EMF Exposures And Decrease Your Risk Of Alzheimer’s & Dementia

If you are worried about the effects of EMFs on your health, take steps to protect yourself. Some of these steps may seem like common sense, but it is worth mentioning all the same.

Turn off your wireless devices at night or anytime you are not using them. Disable Wi-Fi at home and work if you do not need it on. Do not use appliances while asleep; this reduces EMF exposure significantly. The fridge should be hte only appliance operating at night, but it should not be adjacent to a bedroom wall. Lastly, get your home assessed by a building biologist who can check for EMF exposures.

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What are the Environmental Triggers Associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder?

What are the Environmental Triggers Associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder?

Introduction: What is Autism Spectrum Disorder?

Autism is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how people communicate and interact with others. There is no cure for autism, but there is treatment and help that can improve the quality of life for autistic people.

What is Autism Spectrum Disorder?

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a lifelong developmental disability which affects how children and adults experience the world. It can be difficult to understand someone who has autism, because they may behave in ways we don’t expect and have difficulties in understanding things we take for granted.

Definition and Symptoms:

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a lifelong developmental disability which affects how children and adults experience the world. It can be difficult to understand someone who has autism, because they may behave in ways we don’t expect and have difficulties in understanding things

The Current Research on Environmental Triggers and Autism Spectrum Disorders

Environmental triggers can be natural or artificial. These triggers can include things such as chemicals, smells, temperature, and light.

There is a lot of research being done on environmental triggers but there’s not one specific cause for autism spectrum disorder.

The current research on environmental triggers and autism spectrum disorder is relatively new and there are still many unknowns surrounding the topic. However, it is a promising area for future studies. Around 40-50% of the variation in ASD probably comes from environmental factors.

Autism spectrum disorder or ASD is a spectrum of disorders, but what causes it is not yet clear. Researchers have looked at many different environmental triggers for this disorder and they’ve found some patterns. However, none of these triggers seems to be the only reason for the disorder.

Autism & Mercury

Researchers have long been studying the relationship between mercury poisoning and Autism Spectrum Disorder. Silver dental amalgams may also contribute to mercury poisoning. Mercury is also a good conductor of electricity and has been associated with increasing sensitivities to electromagnetic fields. Electro-hypersensitive individuals usually go down the path of removing silver dental fillings. A holistic dentist should remove silver dental amalgams with dental dams to prevent further poisoning from the vapourised mercury. However, it’s not a quick fix, but rather a journey as mercury detoxification takes time, and electro-hypersensitive individuals are usually working with integrative doctors or naturopaths to detoxify from mercury with a variety of binders.

Autism & Heavy Metals

According to studies, exposure to certain metals, such as lead has also been associated with ASD. Lead is a common heavy metal found in most older homes build before 1980. Lead and lead dust can occur from lead paint, lead flashings and even lead baths. Renovated homes with high levels of dust can contain lead dust. Although there were no associations of autism with hair metal concentrations of mercury, copper, cadmium, selenium, and chromium. There is an association with lead being higher in hair metal analysis. Lead is also known to be stored in bones, and leeches from bones during pregnancy, therefore possibly transferring to the womb to the unborn child. Lead is well known to delay the cognitive development of infants and children.

Autism & Electromagnetic Fields

The latest research has linked autism with increased oxidative stress and decreased glutathione levels in the brain. Researchers have also found evidence for oxidative stress-induced disruption of the blood brain barrier and mast cells activation, which could be a possible cause of an exacerbation of autism symptoms. Inflammation is a secondary outcome of oxidative stress, which can be damaging to the body. One of the many causes of oxidative stress and inflammation can be caused by electromagnetic fields (EMFs). EMFs trigger the nitric oxide-peroxynitrite-oxidative stress pathway.

Autism & Traffic-Related Air Pollution

The severity of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is often determined by the age at which symptoms emerge. It may be diagnosed earlier in life if the signs are more severe, and later in life if they are less severe.

Studies show that autism is linked to traffic-related air pollution, which may contribute to neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders. Traffic-related air pollution is associated with cognitive and behavior problems in children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Results showed an approximate 50% risk of ASD associated with average traffic-related air pollution exposure on the child from 3 months before the pregnancy up until age two.

Take care to minimise traffic-related air pollution before you conceive and during pregnancy. Keep your exposure levels down when trying to conceive, during pregnancy, and after the baby is born.

Conclusion: What Can be Done to Minimize Environmental Exposures that can Increase the Risk of Autism Spectrum Disorders?

There are many environmental hazards that can increase the risk of autism spectrum disorders for infants and children. There needs to be a conscientious, precautionary approach for conceiving couples to ensure that their health and environment are taken care of before conceiving.

Mercury poisoning needs to be diagnosed by an integrative doctor or functional medicine practitioner. There are a variety of tests such as hair analysis, stool analysis, and urine analysis. Silver dental amalgams should also be removed/replaced with non-toxic amalgams.

Heavy metals detoxification is another aspect that should also be investigated with your integrative doctor or functional medicine practitioner. However, a building biologist can also be engaged to test your own home for possible sources of lead. Do-It-Yourself (DIY) lead test kits can also be purchased from Lead Safe World.

Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are more common in a home. Wireless routers, smartphones, tablets and even the microwave oven can all transmit wireless radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic fields (EMFs). Other forms of EMFs can be magnetic or electric fields (ELF MF/ELF EF) from ovens, fridges, meter boxes, and even faulty electrical wiring. Increasing the distance from the source reduces exposure, but RF EMFs can penetrate much further than ELF MF/ELF MF. Therefore, it’s best to engage a Building Biologist to conduct EMF testing for the home, to help identify problematic areas and EMF solutions to maintain a safe environment. You can purchase an EMF meter, such as the Cornet ED88T, but you have to understand how to properly conduct EMF testing. Consumer EMF meters have limitations, usually having a single-axis antenna. Professional meters have omnidirectional antennas, tri-axis antennas, and directional antennas to accurately measure EMF exposure levels. Consumer EMF meters can over- or under-estimate the EMF exposure levels. You will also need to understand the different types of EMF and know what the typical EMF sources are. This is where it makes sense to engage a Building Biologist – their training and experience will save you time and money.

Traffic-related air pollution can impact indoor air quality depending on how close you live near high-volume vehicular traffic areas. However, internal sources can also be a problem. A diesel car in the lock-up garage connected to the home can also cause indoor air pollution. Cooking and wood combustion heating can also create air particles polluting the indoor air. Therefore, to monitor and manage the indoor air quality, it is recommended to have the Aeros Air Testing Sensor and the InovaAir Airclean Air Purifier.

Take the precautionary approach and have a safe and healthier home to live in.


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Mast Cell Activation Syndrome

The Problem with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) and How You Can Heal

Introduction: What is Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS)? Symptoms and Causes

Mast Cell Activation Syndrome is a rare but serious condition that affects the body’s mast cells, which are part of our immune system.

The symptoms of Mast Cell Activation Syndrome can vary greatly from person to person. Some people experience only one or two symptoms while others experience many. There are many things that can cause Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, but most people experience an allergic reaction of some sort for at least one symptom.

Mast Cell Activation Syndrome is a rare but serious condition that affects the body’s mast cells, which are part of our immune system. The condition may be triggered by an environmental allergen or other triggers.

How Mast Cells Work and Why They Can Cause Problems for Those with MCAS

Mast cells are immune system cells that produce histamine and other inflammatory substances when they are activated by an allergen. or environmental hazards.

Mast cells are very similar to basophils, however it is believed the latter come from different precursors.

Basophils and mast cells utilize different routes to enter the circulatory system. Basophils migrate through bone marrow and travel in the blood stream, whereas mast cells move to different parts of the body via connective tissue.

Mast cells contain histamine, which is released when they are triggered. The primary functions of histamine in the body include: allergies, inflammation, and defence against pathogens.

There is evidence to suggest that non-ionizing electromagnetic fields cause an increase in the number of mast cells, their movement, and degranulation.

Causes of Mast Cell Activation Syndrome?

Mast cell activation syndrome is a condition characterized by an immune system overreaction to environmental triggers.

The cause of the condition is not entirely understood, but it is believed that there are two main factors that contribute to the development of mast cell activation syndrome: environmental triggers and genetic predisposition. Environmental triggers may include mold, mould, EMF radiation from power lines and certain electronic devices, electro-hypersensitive people, increased numbers of mast cells in the skin near blood vessels.

The symptoms may include a variety of skin problems such as hives or rashes on the skin, eczema-like lesions with red patches and itching. It can also lead to problems with digestion such as diarrhoea or stomach pain.

What a Building Biologist finds with People Suffering from MCAS

According to a research article by Olle Johannson, electro-hypersensitive people exposed to electromagnetic fields have a different pattern of mast cell distribution where there is a high concentration of mast cells near the skin surface resulting in skin irritations/eczema due to degranulation of the mast cells, resulting in the release of histamines.

In another study, the mycotoxins released from mould growth can result in the secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines, especially from mast cells, which then lead to inflammation. The secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines, especially from mast cells, can occur in all tissues (even the brain), and can result in cognitive issues such as memory loss and poor attention, with extreme cases that children being diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

A building biologist often examine the homes of someone suffering from mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS). Building biologists will look for evidence of mold or electromagnetic field radiation. Nearly all cases identified an EMF source or a mold-growth issue within the home. Often, the occupant was sleeping next to a Wi-Fi router or cordless DECT phone, and even sleeping with their smart phone. In other cases, black toxic mold growth or hidden mould growth was identified in the home, which had to be professionally remediated by an IICRC-certified mould remediator.

From a precautionary approach, it is best to eliminate electromagnetic field (EMF) sources within the home and to remediate any mould and moisture issues. This will reduce your environmental hazard exposures while you receive medical treatment from your functional medicine doctor.

How do you treat Mast Cell Activation Syndrome?

To keep a chronic condition such as mast cell activation syndrome under control, find a functional medicine doctor you like and trust to help you. It will take time and patience, but the good news is that treating it will yield good results.

Here’s a Great Video from Dr Ron Ehrlich & Dr Christebelle Yeoh

Worth watching.

They mention the ACNEM.  The Australasian College of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine (ACNEM) is a focused on education and training of medical and healthcare practitioners.





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Health & Safety Concerns in The Home – What’s a Normal EMF Reading?

Health & Safety Concerns in The Home – What’s a Normal EMF Reading?

Introduction: What are Electromagnetic Fields (EMFs)?

Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are “non-ionising radiation” that is created by any device that operates with electricity. EMFs include magnetic fields, electric fields, radiofrequency fields and dirty electricity.

Radio Frequency fields (RF) can be emitted from cellphones, wireless routers, microwaves, smart TV and other electronic devices such as laptops and tablets.

AC magnetic fields (ELF MF) are generated by appliances and motors and are measured in gauss or milligauss using a gauss meter. The frequency range is in the ELF-MF range, and therefore can be labeled as ELF-MF.

AC electric fields (ELF EF) are extra low-frequency AC Electric Fields (ELF EF). AC electric fields are created from building wiring and electrical appliances. The electric field from the wiring in a wall and attached cables will continue to emit a very small electric field even if the appliance itself has been shut off. The strength of the electric field changes from person to person. According to ARPANSA, one should expect a background level of 20 V/m. IARC do not classify AC electric fields as a health concern.

EMF Measurement in The Home

(keywords: electromagnetic field measurement, household emf levels, gauss meters, RF meters, Trifield Meter, Electric Field Meter, dirty electricity meter, oven, smart meter, )

EMF, or electromagnetic field, is a term that is used to describe the levels of radiation that are emitted from devices such as microwaves, cell phones, laptops, and more. For many people in the modern world, it has become difficult to avoid EMF exposure with rates of 90% or more of people having EMFs in their homes.

You will need to purchase an EMF meter to measure EMFs. However, most consumer meters are highly inaccurate. They may over- or under-report the actual EMF levels. A tri-field meter is a meter that measures three different types of EMF. These are typically radio frequencies (RF), magnetic fields (MF), and electric fields (EF).

The tri-field EMF meter needs to be set to each field measurement, and all rooms should be measured. The front and back yard should also be measured and compared to the indoor EMF levels. This needs to be repeated three times, for each EMF type. 

Radiofrequency fields (RF EMF) typically average anywhere from 500 to 1000+ uW/m2. Building biology precautionary levels aim for under 10 uW/m2 for living areas, and under 5 for sleeping areas. Creating distance from the source,

AC magnetic fields (ELF MF) always emit strong magnetic fields within 1.5 metres from the source. The sources are typically appliances or meter boxes, but electric blankets and heaters are another source.

AC Electric fields (ELF EF) always emit strong electric fields within 1.5 metres from the source. The sources are typically electrical appliances, wiring or meter boxes.

Average Electromagnetic Field (EMF) Levels in the Home

It’s important to know that 95% of EMF levels are highest from internal sources. Reducing exposure to these EMFs can be difficult but it is possible.

Building biology guidelines are precautionary thresholds to reduce the exposures as much as possible. Especially when you sleep, but also where you spend the most time during the day.

These precautionary thresholds are:

  • Radio Frequency (RF) EMF Levels: Under 5 uW/m2

  • AC Magnetic Fields (MF / ELF MF) Levels: Under 0.2mG (sleeping area)

  • AC Electric Fields (EF / ELF EF) Levels: Under 0.3 V/m

Building Biologists recommend to limit the number of Wi-Fi routers in your home, place your mobile phone on airplane mode when you are not using it, or turn off your devices at night.

The most common EMFs are: microwaves, fridges, meter box, electrical wiring in walls, power lines outside the house, electrical outlets and lights inside the house.

Average Radio Frequency (RF) EMF Levels

Average AC Magnetic Field (AC MF / ELF MF) Levels

  • Target Building Biology Levels: <0.2mG

  • Induction Cooktop: 25mG+

  • Oven: 30mG+

  • Fish Tank Water Pump: 40mG+

  • Incorrect Electrical Wiring or Unbundled Wiring in roof: 8mG+

    • pillow are below: 1.9mG

  • Nearby street powerlines 5m from bedroom: 2mG+

  • Wall adjacent to Meter box: 8 – 250 mG+ (depends on appliance use)

Average AC Electric Fields (AC EF / ELF EF) Levels

  • Target Building Biology Levels: <0.3 V/m

  • Bedside lamp: 650 V/m

  • Pillow area next to bedside lamp: 140 – 200 V/m

  • Electrical wiring in wall: 800-900V/m

  • General Power Outlet (GPO) with nothing plugged in: 20-30V/m

  • Salt Lamp cable: 110 V/m

Conclusion: How To Live A Safer Life At Home

EMFs are present in almost every environment, whether it is the home, the office or even on public transport. They can be emitted from electrical appliances and wireless devices. It is crucial to take precautionary measures to protect ourselves from these EMF radiation waves.

Some ways to limit exposure include shutting off all unnecessary electronic devices before going to bed and ensuring that you create a distance between yourself and any EMF emitting devices.

If you wish to have a Building Biologist assess your home, visit

Better Appliances and Devices with Lower EMF Radiation Levels

Here are some suggested alternatives to some of the devices mentioned above.

We are living in the era of the Internet of Things (IoT). We have everything from tablets to cars that can connect to the internet. With this, our devices are emitting electromagnetic fields (EMFs) that emit radio waves and microwaves. These EMFs can also be emitted by our heating systems and appliances in our homes or in the office. With these devices, we may not feel any pain or discomfort but there is a lot of evidence that it has a negative impact on our health in the long run.

The good thing is that there are better alternatives to some of these devices mentioned above.

  • Kitchen Appliances: Any Bosch or Miele Products

  • NBN Wireless Routers: BYO NBN Router

  • Avoid any appliances with IoT modules, wireless modules, bluetooth modules. Also avoid any device with the word “Smart” in the title or description. i.e. Smart TV, Smart Bathroom Scale, Smart Watch, Smart Washing Machine, Smart Fridge

  • Bed Side Lamp: Block Blue Light Battery Operated Lamp (Amber Color / Red Color Versions) – use discount code ‘balanced’


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Mobile Phone Technology in Australia

Mobile Phone Technology in Australia


As mobile phone technology advances with each innovation, the delivery of the next generation mobile communication infrastructure (5G) will bring an abundance of new features and capabilities to approximately 26.7 million mobile handset subscribers in Australia. (ABS, 2018). The past six years have seen an exponential increase in data usage, with a 40% increase in 2016/2017 alone. (ABS, 2018). 5G brings faster data speeds, lower latency, and the ability to connect communities through the Internet of Things (IoT). This paper brings together all the technical capabilities of Australia’s mobile technologies and its communication carriers.

Keywords: 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, GSM, LTE, FDD, TDD, MIMO, 64QAM, PAMTS, AMPS


Mobile phones are a modern-day communications convenience that has been enhanced with data communication capabilities that allows users to connect to the Internet at anytime, anywhere.

Australia has a colorful history in the development of its mobile technologies. In August 1981, the first mobile phone was deployed as a public system called PAMTS (ACCC, 2018). This was shortly followed by Telecom’s analogue cellular system called AMPS (Advanced Mobile Phone System) in 1987, and by June 1989, 100,000 AMPS subscribers were reached (ACCC, 2018). Optus became the second telecommunications carrier in 1992 and by December that year, Vodafone was the third carrier listed (ACCC, 2018).. GSM/2G was released in April 1993 by Telstra, Optus in May, and Vodafone in October.  By 1994, one million AMPS connections had been made, and in 1996, one million GSM connections were reached (ACCC, 2018). By 1999, Telstra released CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) technology to replace AMPS, and by 2001, the release of GPRS data network for GSM saw the start of the next revolution for mobile communications (ACCC, 2018). In 2003, Telstra launched the 3G mobile network and the other carriers quickly followed suit, and by this time, there were more than 12 million subscribers to the mobile networks (ACCC, 2018).

By 2015, Telstra successfully beat its rivals, Optus and Vodafone to release the 4G network (SBS News, 2015).  As each generation was deployed, the legacy networks such as AMPS and PAMTS were decommissioned, and in more recent times, 2G services have been getting decommissioned. Telstra shutdown their 2G service in December 2016, and Optus followed suit in August 2017 (Telstra Exchange, 2018a; Optus, 2018). Vodafone has finally shutdown it’s 2G service on 30th June, 2018 (Vodafone Australia, 2018a).

Today, Telstra has 99.4% coverage across Australia with it 3G & 4G coverage to ensure a quality of service for its 17 million customers (Telstra Exchange, 2018a). As the industry awaits the confirmation on the 5G technology standards, evolution in the data speeds have taken place with 4GX/4G+ as data speed requirements have increased with the advent of internet streaming services such as Netflix and Spotify. Telstra was the first to delivery 4GX in September 2017.


Licensing & Regulations

The mobile technologies have slowly evolved from 2G, to 3G, 4G and currently carrier-branded 4GX, 4G+ or 4G Plus. These mobile technologies operate in the radiofrequency spectrums, with telecommunication companies using different frequencies such as 850Mhz, 1800Mhz or 2.1Ghz licensed from the Australian Broadcasting Authority and the Australian Communications Authority (ACMA). ACMA is the regulatory body that governs the RF spectrum licensing, standards and codes of practice (Wikipedia, 2018b).

The spectrum licenses are awarded for up to 15 years and there is an annual license tax (ACMA, 2018k). “The core conditions for spectrum licences are set out in section 66 of the Radiocommunications Act 1992” (ACMA, 2018d).

ACMA Licensing Revenue

As RF licenses are sold by the ACMA spectrum auction process, the licensees are allowed the use of these RF frequencies with a defined expiry date. In 2017 alone, the total revenue raised by the spectrum licensing was $1.642billion (ACMA, 2018g). In one auction in the 700MHz band, resulted in $1.55billion, which makes up the bulk of the Telstra 4GX service. The majority of the 2017 spectrum will expire in 2029 to 2032 depending on the RF band (ACMA, 2018g).

4G – Fourth Generation Technology

Released in 2008, Long Term Evolution (LTE) is also known as E-UTRAN (Evolved Universal Terrestrial Access Network), which brings better packet switching capabilities, less complexity and higher data rates (3GPP, 2018b).

It introduced the Evolved Packet System (EPS) as a purely IP-based environment that allows enhanced packet switching capabilities via the connectivity of the base stations and allow things such as OFDMA (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access), modulation up to 64QAM, large bandwidths and spatial multiplexing (3GPP, 2018b).

The 4G network operates in two (2) different ways:

·       TDD-LTE (time-division-duplexing-LTE)

·       FDD-LTE (frequency-division-duplexing-LTE)Majority of the mobile networks are working via FDD-LTE, where 2 separate frequencies are used to for transmitting and receiving data (Optus, 2013). However, TDD-LTE uses the single frequency to achieve data communications in both directions (Optus, 2013).

Optus announced its 4G networks in 2013, indicating that TDD-LTE and FDD-LTE will be used for its networks allowing TDD-LTE at 2300MHz (2.3GHz) and FDD-LTE at 1800MHz. (Optus, 2013). This was a first for any carrier as all other carriers used FDD-LTE.


4GX/4G+ – Faster 4G

Faster data speeds via 4G has been innovated by companies like Qualcomm and Ericsson by leveraging next generation LTE standards such as:

  • ·       LTE-Advanced (carrier aggregation)

  • ·       LTE-Broadcast

  • ·       Voice over LTE (VoLTE)

Telstra obtained majority of the 700MHz spectrum when it became available after the analogue television was switched off and uses the LTE-Advanced carrier aggregation to provide faster internet speeds on its 4GX service (Telstra, 2018a). Telstra also purchased a major portion of the 2500MHz/2.5GHz spectrum in 2013 as well (ACMA, 2018i).

The remaining 700MHz band was sold in 2017 to TPG (738–748 MHz paired with 793–803 MHz) and Vodafone (733 MHz–738 MHz paired with 788 MHz–793 MHz) (ACMA, 2018j). This would be for the FDD / FDD-LTE networks.

Telstra also activated their Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) in September 2017 over their Cat M1 network (Telstra Exchange, 2018b). This has numerous implications to future applications as VoLTE, which allows voice over data, and can potentially mean IoT devices can communicate to each other via VoLTE (Telstra Exchange, 2018b).

Vodafone has enabled their 4G+ via LTE-Advanced carrier aggregation using their 800MHz and 1800MHz RF spectrum bands to achieve higher speeds for their customers (Vodafone 2015).

In August 2015, Optus also launched their 4G Plus LTA-Advanced networks by providing a world first in 3x carrier aggregation, achieving this by using 1x FDD and 2x TDD in the configuration of combination of 20+20MHz of 2300 MHz and 15MHz paired of 1800 MHz spectrum (Singtel Optus, 2018a). Normal 2x carrier aggregation uses combinations of 2300MHz+2300MHz, 700MHz+1800MHz or 700MHz+2600MHz (Singtel Optus, 2018b).


LTE Broadcast / Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Service (eMBMS)

LTE Broadcast, also known as Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Service, is a 3GPP LTE standard for broadcasting data across a single frequency network (Qualcomm. 2018b).

This is largely going to be used by communication carriers to allow the broadcasting of major events such as:

·       Live event streaming

·       Realtime Reality TV streaming

·       Radio or Music streaming

·       News, Market, Sports and Weather updates

·       Other media delivery such as youtube, Netflix, Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio

It is a key feature that communication carriers are leveraging to generate other forms of revenue.

In-flight LTE or Air-to-Ground LTE

As demand for 4G grows and the convenience of accessing the Internet becomes widely accepted, the demand moves towards the air space, flying between cities. However, bringing that convenience into the aeroplane becomes a challenging task with high costs associated with it. Alcatel-Lucent (now Nokia) had developed a solution that may already be widely deployed in Europe since 2016 (Nokia, 2018).   Previous solutions using satellites were costly and inconvenient for the users.

Known as A2G LTE, it will not replace satellite connections (for those over-the-sea long haul flights) but rather complement it with cost efficient solutions that provides fast data services for the passengers.

In Australia, airlines such as Qantas and Virgin Australia have been trialling the technology with Telstra 4G (Phone Arena, 2014). In 2014, Telstra created the Skinet Network utilizing 4G networks and dedicated mobile sites between Melbourne and Sydney (Telstra Exchange, 2018c).

Qantas planes were fitted with 4G antenna fins (above) to enable connectivity to the mobile sites (Telstra Exchange, 2018c). However, it cannot be confirmed if this solution is enabled for Qantas or Virgin Australia, nor the implementation of A2G LTE solution.

What has been confirmed is the use of ViaSat satellite solution using the NBN Skymuster Ka-band satellites for Qantas, as announced by Qantas and ViaSat in 2017 (Qantas Newsroom, 2017; ViaSat, 2017).  According to the ACMA (2018l), Ka-Band satellites use the 17.7–37.5 GHz frequencies.

All Qantas domestic B737s and A330s are expected to be fitted with the solution by the second half of 2018 (Qantas Newsroom, 2017). It is expected that streaming services such as Foxtel, Netflix and Spotify will push the inflight WIFI solution to the limits but there are some free benefits being offered to entice the use of its services (ViaSat, 2018). At this point in time, the implementation of A2G LTE solution is unconfirmed. It is assumed that the ViaSat solution is the only solution implemented.

5G – Fifth Generation Technology

The 5G technology introduces advanced communication protocols to provide faster internet data communication speeds and a “connected environment” between user and device, device-to-device, car to device and any other innovative possibilities. Smart cities with IoT sensors in lights, sewerage pipes, traffic lights, driverless cars and medical sensors will connect via 5G.

The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) is touting all the amazing capabilities of 5G and how it will help community and businesses and drive up to $11.8billion of productivity benefits up to 2025 (AMTA, 2018d).

According to the AMTA, 2019 to 2020 will be the commercial launch of 5G and by 2025, mass adoption of the technology (AMTA, 2018c). However, some of the more concerning features of 5G will be the proliferation of cell antennas ranging from small cell to macro cells (as seen in the next photo) (AMTA, 2018c). The small cell and macro cells will be part of a RAN (Radio Access Network) for mobile users and wireless devices connecting to the core network (AMTA, 2018c).

The ACMA have confirmed decisions to re-allocate the 3.6GHz range for 5G use, with the 5.6GHz spectrum for point-to-multipoint use and finally the possible use of 28GHz for regional Australia (ACMA, 2018a; ACMA, 2018b; ACMA, 2018c; ACMA, 2018d). The 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) is a global initiative to set global technology standards for 5G with the cooperation of seven (7) organizations responsible on defining telecommunication standards (3GPP, 2018a). In December 2017, 3GPP announced the first approved 5G architecture, which allows telecommunication carriers in each country to deliver on the 5G technology based on the architecture (3GPP, 2017). 

According to the AMTA, the 5G spectrum is visualized as below with IoT and coverage occurring in the 1-6GHz range and extreme data rates occurring beyond 6GHz (AMTA, 2018c). As the frequency increases beyond 30GHz, the RF wavelengths become millimetre waves (mmWave).

Some of the technology differences with 5G is the capability to do ‘Massive MIMO’ (Massive Multiple Input, Multiple Output) at the base station (aka. Cell tower). A key difference with these base stations is the number of antenna ports/elements, where 4G base stations would have 2-8 antenna ports, while 5G base stations will have more than 100 antenna elements (AMTA, 2018c).

Massive MIMO provides a very different form of connectivity as opposed to 4G. 4G provides a broad coverage area for the mobile device to have connectivity, however, with 5G Massive MIMO, it allows a direct RF signal to be “steered” to the user in a method called Beam Forming or Beam Steering (AMTA, 2018c). This allows better signal strength and connectivity, while simultaneously providing high speed data connectivity.

As early as 2016, Telstra has been testing 5G in Melbourne in partnership with Ericsson (Telstra, 2018b; Telstra Exchange, 2016). Telstra has tested features such as high data speeds of 20GBps (100 times faster than 4G), RF beam steering to the user or device location and maintaining very low latency capabilities (Telstra Exchange, 2016).

In February 2018, Telstra spent $60million to open the 5G Innovation Centre on the Gold Coast and also announced the world first outdoor 26GHz mmWave data call (Telstra Exchange, 2018d).

In April 2018, Gold Coast hosted the Commonwealth Games, but also show cased the first Australian deployments of 5G to the public (AMTA, 2018d). 

Telstra hosted free 5G wireless for the public as part of its showcasing, while also announcing a 5G-connected car (Telstra Exchange, 2018e).

Optus also announced the deployment of 5G, and showcased its capabilities by providing a variety of virtual reality (VR), video streaming at 8K and 360 degree dome to experience the event games (Singtel Optus, 2018c).

Vodafone Australia is leveraging its global counterparts to start testing on the 3GPP 5G NR standard within the 3.7GHz spectrum (Vodafone Global, 2018a). 

With 2020 and 2021 involving large-scale deployments of 5G infrastructure, the infrastructure is being relayed onto the 4G infrastructure. This means that 5G antennas receive signals from 5G phones and transmit them to 4G communications and backhaul networks. Eventually, NR (New Radio) standards will be used as Telco’s decommission the 3G infrastructure. At this current stage, 5G communications occur in the low to mid-band frequency ranges. These are the 700/800MHz and 3.6GHz frequency range. Recent mmWave frequency bands have been auctioned off and pre-release licenses have allowed Telstra and Optus to trial the 26GHz/27GHz bands. However, 5G devices using mmWave frequencies are yet to be available for general consumer use.


With telecommunication carriers like Telstra & Optus having already deployed 5G in 2019/2020, the future is decidedly defined for those looking to use the latest generation of mobile devices. According to ARN (2011), As of now, 7 percent of NBN internet services would be provided by wireless and/or satellite services, and the majority by fibre (ARN, 2011). NBN Co is looking to leverage 5G technologies as part of its wireless service despite competition from telecommunication carriers.

Finally, the installation of any infrastructure is regulated by the ACMA as part of the Telecommunications Act 1997 and the Codes of Practice, C564:2011, which is maintained by the Communications Alliance (CommsAlliance, 2018a; CommsAlliance, 2018b). As part of C564:2011, the carriers are required to notify councils about proposals to install mobile phone towers or wireless base stations (CommsAlliance, 2018b; ACMA, 2018f). As part of the C564:2011 code, Council and community consultation is required as well as carriers requiring to identify community sensitive locations before the mobile base station/tower installation is initiated (CommsAlliance, 2018b). Each of these installations are registered with the ACMA, and eventually shows up in their Site Location map, however, with the proliferation of small cell antennas and macro cell towers, it will surely test the capabilities of the ACMA Site Location Map to clearly identify these installations. Or will it?


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Version: 1.8

Created: 13 July 2018

Revision Date: 3 Nov 2021

Published Online: 3 Nov 2021