The primary purpose of science worldwide is to do research or investigation that will lead to the understanding of our physical world. Our physical world is the world around us that we can interact with using our five human senses (hearing, seeing, smelling, feeling, tasting) to perceive. Scientific research normally leads to the creation of new scientific knowledge about our universe. Physicists are researching to understand the relationship between the matter and energy that make up our universe or natural world. Biologists are studying microorganisms, ecosystems, animals and plants in our physical world. Chemists are trying to understand the properties of elements, and chemical reactions at the atomic level in our world.
Technology or engineering as it is known today on the other hand uses the scientific knowledge that is created by the scientists to make technological tools that can be used to solve the problems of real life and to make our world a better place to live. The current 5G technology is the creation that is based on the understanding of the scientific knowledge about the electromagnetic wave that was created by scientists through research. Examples of technological tools made by engineers today from scientific knowledge are cell phones, automobiles, airplanes, missiles, X-ray machines, scanners, laptops, photocopying machines, printers, cameras, GPS, Internet technology, desktops, televisions, radios, light bulbs, refrigerators, cooking ovens, air conditioners, heaters, vacuum machines, skyscrapers, bridges, credit and debit cards, ATM machines, remote controls, etc.
The scientific knowledge of forces and motion (including the force of gravity) led the engineers to create automobiles, planes, satellites, missiles, exploration of the space by rockets, etc. The scientific knowledge of temperature and heat energy led to the creation of thermometers for temperature measurement, as well as ovens, refrigerators, air conditioners, materials that absorb or reflect heat energy. The scientific knowledge of the electromagnetic waves led engineers to the creation of radio communication, television broadcasting, X-ray machines, microwaves for cooking, etc.
Worldwide, scientists who create the scientific knowledge are generally famous, the engineers that use the scientific knowledge to create technological tools that make our life easier and better today are less famous or recognized. The creator of a new knowledge in life generally gets more recognition or credit than the users of the new knowledge. This is the reason why Galilee Galileo, Isaac Newton, Michael Faraday and Albert Einstein are still very famous worldwide till today.
The 5g Technology
The 5G technology for mobile network is simply an improvement on the current 4G technology that the world is using at the moment. This improvement means the 5G technology is better, faster, more reliable, and can do more things than what the current 4G is doing. The technological creations of the future cannot use the present 4G technology to operate. For example, more population in the world means that more roads, schools, hospitals, jobs, housing must be made to accommodate it. To download or to upload enormous data, 5G is the way to go. The 5G technology will allow more interconnection between people, machines, devices and objects to be possible.
The world of communication technology continues to improve and to get better. The 1G technology was used for analog voice (early telephone systems that used traditional landline service to operate), 2G technology ushered in the digital voice era (it allowed phone calls to be sent and received through the Internet and with better voice reception), 3G technology gave birthed to the mobile data (this technology allowed your phones to access the Internet anywhere even when you are away from the Wi-Fi location). The 4G technology introduced us to the mobile Internet era of today (mobile web access, IP telephony, video chat, gaming services, high-definition mobile TV, video conferencing and 3D-television).
All these generations of communication technology (1G to 5G) operate in the non-ionizing band of the electromagnetic spectrum (radio waves), and with varying frequencies. There are two types of radiation. The ionizing radiation is dangerous to the human cells. It can damage it by changing its DNA. Gamma-Rays, X-Rays and particles (alpha, beta and neutrons) are the ionizing radiation. The new 5G technology does not use this type of radiation. It uses the radio wave band of the electromagnetic spectrum which is the non-ionizing radiation.
The number of vibration (to and fro motion, up and down movement or backward and forward motion) that an object or a particle makes in one second is the object’s frequency. This is measured in Hertz (Hz). 1Hz means one vibration per second. The energy of the wave is associated with its frequency. The higher the frequency, the more energetic the wave or the radiation is. The 5G technology uses a higher frequency band than the rest of the G-generations, but in the non-ionizing band. The energy of the 5G technology is not dangerous to the cells of the human body. The 5G technology is equally safe like the 1G, 2G, 3G, and 4G generations of communication technology.
No single study done so far by scientists worldwide pointed to the 5G technology to be dangerous. The coincidence that occurred in timing during the initial launching of the 5G technology in China in late 2019, and the sudden outbreak of Coronavirus in Wuhan in China is the main reason behind the ongoing conspiracy theory that says the 5G technology causes COVID-19. Conspiracy theory is born when mankind does not understand the new technological innovation that is born, or it does not support the new things and changes that come with a new technology.
In conclusion, the 5G technology will make life better and easier for mankind in this 21st century human universe. It is not dangerous because it does not use the ionizing band of the electromagnetic spectrum. The 5G technology is an improvement on the existing 4G technology. The 5G technology will improve the interconnections between people, objects and machines in the future. Our world in this 21st will be made better by this new 5G technology.
Author:Dr. Sunday Iwalaiye, Chartered Physicist (CPhysMInstP), Chartered Science Teacher (CSciTech).