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Mobile phone radiation 'within agreed limits'

Tests on several of the world's most popular second-generation mobile phone models revealed no health hazards, with radiation levels recorded well below agreed limits, according to data published by a Finnish agency.

An update of research begun in 1999 by Finland's Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK) found all 12 tested models to have radiation emission levels - referred to as specific absorption rate (SAR) - almost less than half the level of two watts per kilogram agreed by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP).

"All models we tested had a maximum SAR of 1.12 watts per kilogram," said STUK researcher Kari Jokela.

SAR measures the amount of power absorbed by the brain. Excessive SAR can cause sickness and even brain damage if the absorption rate exceeds 50 watts per kilogram.

Suppliers of the tested models included Motorola, Nokia, Samsung, Siemens and Sony-Ericsson.

STUK will test more mobile phones based on the GSM this year.

The agency will test 3G mobile phones and base stations next year, when sufficient handsets and simulation equipment are available.

A Dutch study published last year showed that under certain conditions, radio signals transmitted from 3G base stations could cause headaches and nausea.

John Blau writes for IDG News Service


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