NEW TECH: Concerns have been raised by the community about the safety of 5G.
NEW TECH: Concerns have been raised by the community about the safety of 5G. iStock

Why Aussie scientists say 5G is better for you

CONCERNS have been raised in the community about the safety of new 5G mobile phone technology, but scientists claim the technology poses little risk.

The new technology is about to be rolled out in Australia to make phone and internet speed faster, using millimetre waves, and concerns have been raised by the community about its safety.

5G emits radio waves, and in theory, radio waves at really high levels can produce friction in the water contained by the human body, raising temperature and provoking hypothetical damage, like the ones happening inside a microwave oven, but scientists insist they is no chance of that happening.

Scientists insist 5G waves will act at lower levels than those currently used for varying applications in our community, so the risk is actually smaller.

Dr Ken Karipidis, the assistant director of the assessment and advice section of the Radiation Health Services Branch at Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA), said there is no established health effects from radio waves that are found in the environment at the power levels used in telecommunications, including 5G.

"Health effects only occur of the exposure level is high enough, the only established effect if that of rise in temperature, heating of tissue, but that sort of exposure is not found on every day environments," Dr Karapidis said.

"With telecommunications, the exposure levels are extremely low and there is no heating effect."

Dr Karapidis said there is no scientific link between mobile usage and brain cancer.

"We just did a very large study in Australia that looked at brain tumour incident rates in the last 30 years, and we all know that mobile phone usage has increased, but the brain tumour incidence has actually remained quite stable," he said.

Dr Sarah Loughran, Director of the Australian Centre for Electromagnetic Bioeffects Research at the University of Wollongong, said the main concern about 5G is that higher frequencies and larger number of antennas used in 5G will mean higher exposures.

"Higher frequencies actually mean that the radio frequency electromagnetic energy doesn't penetrate as deeply - so less is actually absorbed deeper in the body than previous generations of mobile phones," she said.

"Similarly, while more antennas may be required to service areas where demand for the service is high, users are closer to the mobile phone base station and therefore their devices can operate at a reduced power, reducing the exposure from their personal device."