Conversion Chart, World Exposure Limits, Exposures EMR/EMF

Updated 2/23/19

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Conversion Chart Microwave Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) = (EMF)

Exposure to radiofrequency (RF) radiation is classified as a Group 2B Possible Human Carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer at the WHO as of 2011. Many scientists who work in the field of EMR feel there is clear evidence of harm from long term, low level exposure to this pulsating and penetrating non-ionizing radiation which warrants an IARC upgrade to a Group 1 Known Carcinogen. Hardell and Carlsberg (2018). Reading the scientific literature can be confusing as there are different units of measurements (μW/cm2  μW/m2  W/m2,). In addition, harm from radio frequency exposure varies with power, distance, device, modulation (pulsations and wave design) and length of exposure.  Wall et al demonstrated that with a weak reception phone signal  radiation is magnitudes higher. The peak power and pulsation, rather than the averaged power, are the  important aspects of cellular injury.

It is important to keep in mind not only that the current thermal (heat) RF exposure standards vary in different countries, but also the biologically toxic (oxidative/membrane) RF exposure levels shown to produce harm at non-thermal levels which are far below current U.S. RF guidelines. More lenient current U.S. FCC standards put large populations at risk for a diverse array of long term health issues.  We list several exposure standards and limits along with the short conversion chart to enable easier reading of the scientific literature.  The Austrian Medical Association Guidelines of 2016  are also posted below. Scientific references on exposure measurements are listed at the end (Ambient, Children, Skin and Body Exposures, Occupational)

Industry Standardization Worldwide?

Industry is trying to standardize all countries to allow higher levels of RF that are consistent with current IEEE & ICNIRP guidelines (Same as US and Canada) which do not take into account non thermal biological effects, only heat. Here is a slide presentation that helps to understand industry strategy. If this moves forward countries who wish to use lower precautionary limits will be unable to do so. TIA-MWF PowerPoint for FCC Labs and OET Meeting


To Print : Conversion Chart Microwave Electromagnetic Radiation PDF

See Also: Safe Living Technology EMF/RF/Magnetic Field full conversion charts here

Scroll down for : *Worldwide Exposure Limits *Current Heat-Based Guidelines and *Scientific References on Measured Human and Children’s Exposures


Levels of Concern and Exposure Limits

Key to Chart: *   **    ***  and  Current Limits in U.S.

*      Low Concern Building Biologists benchmark for long term exposure

**    BioInitiative Limits- No observable effect on humans 

***  Extreme Concern- Building Biologists benchmark for long term exposure Building Biologist EMR Exposure Guidelines are here

Current Limits in U.S. are in μW/m2  Red  highlights and are 1000 μW/cm=1mW/cm2 =.001W/cm2 = 10,000,000 μW/m2 = 10,000 mW/m2 = 10W/m2 = 61.4 V/m= 64,100 mV/m

Conversion Chart EMR = EMF

Power equivalents— 1 μW/cm2 = 10,000 μW/m= 0.01 W/m2

Watts/Square Meter (W/m2)


microWatts/Square Meter (μW/m2)



microWatts/Square Centimeter (μW/cm2 )


0.000,000,000,000,1 W/m2 0.000,000,1 μW/m2 0.000,000,000,01 μW/cm2
0.000,000,000,001 W/m2 0.000,001 μW/m2 0.000,000,000,1 μW/cm2
0.000,000,000,01 W/m2 0.000,01 μW/m2 0.000,000,001 μW/cm2
0.000,000,000,1 W/m2   0.000,1 μW/m2 0.000,000,01 μW/cm2
0.000,000,001 W/m2 0.001 μW/m2 0.000,000,1 μW/cm2
0.000,000,01 W/m2 0.01 μW/m2 0.000,001 μW/cm2
0.000,000,1 W/m* 0.1 μW/m* 0.000,01 μW/cm*
0.000,001 W/m2  **   1 μW/m2  ** 0.000,1 μW/cm2  **
0.000,01 W/m2 10 μW/m2 0.001 μW/cm2
0.000,1 W/m2 100 μW/m2 0.01 μW/cm2
0.001 W/m*** 1,000 μW/m*** 0.1 μW/cm2 ***
0.01 W/m2 10,000 μW/m2 1 μW/cm2
0.1 W/m2 100,000 μW/m2 10 μW/cm2
1 W/m2 1,000,000 μW/m2 100 μW/cm2
10 W/m2 10,000,000 μW/m2 1,000 μW/cm2
100 W/m2 100,000,000 μW/m2 10,000 μW/cm2
1000 W/m2 1,000,000,000 μW/m2 100,000 μW/cm2

Conversion chart Volts per meter (V/m) to μW/cm2   

Using Acoustameter RF-10- Peak RF-EMR Emissions are in Volts/meter (V/m) which translates to power density in (µW/m²). Note Peak levels more important than average levels.

Volts per Meter (V/m) to milli Volts per meter (mV/m) to microWatts per meter squared (μW/m2) to microWatts per centimeter squared (μW/cm2)

  • 0.000,194 V/m = 0.194 mV/m = 0.000,1 μW/m2.  = 0.000,000,01 μW/cm2
  • 0.000,614 V/m = 0.614 mV/m = 0.001 μW/m2.  = 0.000,000,1 μW/cm2
  • 0.001,94 V/m = 1.94 mV/m = 0.01 μW/m2 = 0.000,001 μW/cm2
  • 0.006,14 V/m = 6.14 mV/m 0.1 μW/m2 = 0.000,01 μW/cm2 * Low concern
  • 0.019,4 V/m = 19.4 mV/m   = 1 μW/m2 = 0.000,1 μW/cm2 ** Bioinitiative NOE
  • 0.061,4 V/m = 61.4 mV/m = 10 μW/m2 = 0.001 μW/cm2
  • 0.194 V/m = 194 mV/m = 100 μW/m2 = 0.01 μW/cm2
  • 0.614 V/m = 614 mV/m = 1000 μW/m2 = 0.1 μW/cm2 *** Extreme concern BB
  • 1.94 V/m = 1,942 mV/m = 10,000 μW/m2 = 1 μW/cm2
  • 6.14 V/m = 6,140 mV/m = 100,000 μW/m2 = 10 μW/cm2
  • 19.4 V/m = 19,416 mV/m = 1,000,000 μW/m2 = 100 μW/cm2 – current U.S. guidelines
  • 61.4 V/m = 61,400 mV/m = 10,000,000 μW/m2 = 1,000 μW/cm2- current guidelines
  • 194 V/m = 194,164 mV/m = 100,000,000 μW/m2 = 10,000 μW/cm2
  • 614 V/Mm= 614,003 mV/m = 1,000,000,000 μW/m2 = 100,000 μW/cm2
  • 1942 V/m = 1,941,648 mV/m = 10,000,000,000 μW/m2 = 1,000,000 μW/cm2

Note: Current outdated FCC Guidelines

  • 19.4 V/m = 19,416 mV/m = 1,000,000 μW/m2 = 100 μW/cm2
  • 61.4 V/m = 61,400 mV/m = 10,000,000 μW/m2 = 1,000 μW/cm2

Note: Building Biologists Extreme Concern for Long Term Exposure

  • 0.614 V/m = 614 mV/m = 1000 μW/m2 = 0.1 μW/cm2

Note: Bioinitiative Limit for no Observable Effects

  • 0.019,4 V/m = 19.4 mV/m   = 1 μW/m2 = 0.000,1 μW/cm2


Modern Homes  Full of Microwave Radiation

This news video, from Safe Living Technologies, shows some of the sources of wireless radiation in the home. The measurements are done by a Building Biologist who acknowledges these levels are within the legal guidelines but not precautionary.  Modern Homes  Full of Microwave Radiation


Wireless Exposure Limits in Different Countries

The limits are for frequencies between 300Mhz-300GHz in microwatts/cm2 

Limit guidelines in U.S. are from 200 uW/cm2 to 1000 uW/cm2 (2 W/m2 to 10 W/m2) for RF radiation depending on frequency.  Countries developed different standards based on either  *Thermal Effects *Non-Thermal Effects or *Precautionary Considerations

U.S.                                   200 microwatts/cm2  to 1,000 microwatts/cm2

Canada                           1,000 microwatts/cm2

China                                               10 microwatts/cm2

Russia                                              10 microwatts/cm2

Italy                                                 10 microwatts/cm2

France                                             10 microwatts/cm2

Poland                                             10 microwatts/cm2

Hungary                                          10 microwatts/cm2

Switzerland General                         9.5 microwatts/cm2

Switzerland Schools and Hospitals   4.25 microwatts/cm2

Belgium                                                        2.4 microwatts/cm2

Bulgaria                                                        2.4 microwatts/cm2

Luxembourg                                                2.4 microwatts/cm2

Ukraine                                                         2.4 microwatts/cm2

Lichtenstein                                                         0.1 microwatts/cm2

Austria  Outdoor                                                        0.001 microwatts/cm2

Austria  Indoor                                                                 0.0001 microwatts/cm2


Cosmic EMR background we evolved from                         <0.00000000001 μW/cm2


BioInitiative Report recommendation – ‘No Observable Effect’  with factor of 10 added for safety = 0.0003 μW/cm2.


Austrian Medical Association (AMA) Exposure Limits

“In general, a wide variety of forms of EMF exposure (e.g. from cordless phones, wireless internet access, electrical installations and electrical devices in the building, mobile phone base stations, radio and TV transmitters, high-voltage lines or transformer stations) may be the root causes of health problems….Irrespective of the ICNIRP recommendations for acute effects, the following benchmarks apply to regular exposure of more than four hours per day…” AMA

The EUROPEAM EMF GUIDELINES 2016  for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of EMF-related health problems and illnesses is based on the Austrian Medical Association Guidelines and  gives an “overview of the current knowledge regarding EMF-related health risks and provides recommendations for the diagnosis, treatment and accessibility measures of EHS to improve and restore individual health outcomes as well as for the development of strategies for prevention.” List of scientific references given. Here are their recommendations.

High-frequency electromagnetic radiation (as power flow density)

0.1 μW/cm2   (≥1000 μW/m2 ) (≥1 mW/m2)—Very  far above normal
μW/cm2   to  0.1 μW/cm2   (10-1000 μW/m2) (0.01-1 mW/m2)- Far above normal

0.000,1 μW/cm2   to  0.001 μW/cm2   (1-10 μW/m2) (0.001-0.01 mW/m2)- Slightly above normal

Less than 0.000,1 μW/cm2   (≤1 μW/m2) (≤0.001 mW/m2) – Within normal limits

“The benchmarks listed are intended to be applied to individual types of radiation, e.g. GSM, UMTS, WiMAX, TETRA, radio, TV, DECT or WLAN, and refer to peak levels [not averaged levels]. The benchmarks do not apply to radar, which must be evaluated separately. Highly critical types of radiation, such as periodic signals (mobile telephony, DECT, WLAN, digital broadcasting…), should be critically evaluated, especially if levels are far above normal, while less critical types, such as non-pulsed or non-periodic signals (USW, shortwave, medium and long wave, analogue broadcasting), may be considered more leniently.” AMA- Here are the EUROPEAM EMF Guidelines 2016 EHS – PDF to print or download.


Low-frequency Alternating Electric Fields

≥10 V/m  Very far above normal

1.5-10 V/m -Far above normal

0.3-1.5 V/m- Slightly above normal

≤0.3 V/m – Within normal limits

*The benchmarks (potential-free measurement) are intended to be applied to the range up to and around 50 Hz; higher frequencies and distinct harmonics should be more critically evaluated.

What are the 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G frequencies?

1GAnalog- Advanced Mobile Phone Service (AMPS) was commercially introduced in the 1980’s and operated with voice only at 800 MHz with a continuous wave signal.

2G – Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) and Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA), are variants of 2G systems, introduced in 1990’s providing text messaging, multimedia messaging and internet access. These are pulsed signals and  used in the first digital cell phones. Frequencies are a combination of 850 and 1900 or 900 and 1800 MHz.

3G – Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service (UMTS)– Introduced in 1998 with broadband features providing data transfer, mobile internet and video calling. There are dozens of frequency bands available in the 800–900 MHz range and the 1700–2100 MHz range depending on the carrier.

4G – Long Term Evolution (LTE) –Was released in 2008 with higher frequency broadband supporting faster web access, gaming, video conferencing, and HD Mobile TV. These frequencies are in the 700 MHz, 1700/2100 MHz and the 2500–2690 MHz range.

5G- Device-to-Device Communication, Proposed for expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT). Uses wavelengths from 30 to 100 GHz and possibly up to 300 GHz.

  • 5G: 600 MHz = cm microwaves of 50cm 20 inches   (“MHz” = Megahertz)
  • 4G: 700 MHz = cm microwaves of ~43cm ≈ 17 inches  (“cm” = centimeter)
  • 3G/4G: 800 MHz = cm microwaves of 37.5cm ≈ 15 inches
  • 3G/4G: 900 MHz = cm microwaves of ~33.3cm ≈ 13 inches
  • 3G/4G: 1800 MHz = cm microwaves of ~16.7cm 6.6 inches
  • 3G/4G: 2100 MHz = cm microwaves of ~14.3cm ≈ 5.6 inches
  • Wi-Fi: 2450 MHz = cm microwaves of ~12cm 5 inches
  • 5G: 3100 MHz to 3550 MHz = ~9.7 to ~8.5cm ≈ 3.8 to 3.3 inches
  • 5G: 3550 MHz to 3700 MHz = ~8.5cm to ~8.1cm 3.3 to 3.2 inches
  • 5G: 3700 MHz to 4200 MHz = ~8.1cm to ~7cm 3.2 to 2.8 inches
  • 5G: 4200 to 4900 MHz = ~7cm to ~6cm 2.8 to 2.4 inches
  • Wi-Fi: 5800 MHz = ~5cm microwaves of ~2 inches          (“mm” = millimeter)
  • 5G: 24,250 to 24,450 MHz = mm microwaves of ~12mm 0.5 inch
  • 5G: 25,050 to 25,250 MHz = mm microwaves of ~12mm 0.5 inch
  • 5G: 25,250 to 27,500 MHz = mm microwaves of ~11mm 0.4 inch
  • 5G: 27,500 to 29,500 MHz = mm microwaves of ~10mm 0.4 inch
  • 5G: 31,800 to 33,400 MHz = mm microwaves of ~9mm ≈ 0.4 inch
  • 5G: 37,000 to 40,000 MHz = mm microwaves of ~8mm ≈ 0.3 inch
  • 5G: 42,000 to 42,500 MHz = mm microwaves of ~7mm ≈ 0.3 inch
  • 5G: 64,000 to 71,000 MHz = mm microwaves of ~5mm ≈ 0.2 inch
  • 5G: 71,000 to 76,000 MHz = mm microwaves of ~4mm ≈ 0.2 inch
  • 5G: 81,000 to 86,000 MHz = mm microwaves of ~3.6mm 0.1 inch

Exposure Limits Have Never Considered Long Term Exposure or Non-Thermal Bio-Effects

Here is a 1999  letter (posted on, 1999-radiofrequency-interagency-workgroup,  from US Health and Human Services Radiofrequency Interagency Working Group to the Industry IEEE.  It states, “There is a need to discuss and differentiate the criteria for guidelines for acute and chronic exposure conditions. The past approach of basing the exposure limits on acute effects data with an extrapolation to unlimited chronic exposure durations is problematic. There is an extensive data base on acute effects with animal data, human data (e.g. MRI information), and modeling to address thermal insult and associated adverse effects for acute exposure (e.g., less than one day). For lower level (“non-thermal”), chronic exposures, the effects of concern may be very different from those for acute exposure (e.g., epigenetic effects, tumor development, neurologic symptoms). It is possible that the IEEE RF radiation guidelines development process may conclude that the data for these chronic effects exist but are inconsistent, and therefore not useable for guideline development. If the chronic exposure data are not helpful in determining a recommended exposure level, then a separate rationale for extrapolating the results of acute exposure data may be needed. In either case (chronic effects data that are useful or not useful), a clear rationale needs to be developed to support the exposure guideline for chronic as well as acute exposure.”

Martin Pall, PhD. Discusses Development of ICNIRP Guidelines Based on Heat

5G: Great risk for EU, U.S. and International Health! Compelling Evidence for Eight Distinct Types of Great Harm Caused by Electromagnetic Field (EMF) Exposures and the Mechanism that Causes Them. (2018) Martin L. Pall, PhD. Discusses SCENIHR and ICNIRP (International Commission on Non Ionising Radiation Protection – ICNIRP, Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR) Guidelines for RFR and robust scientific literature on adverse health effects which are both considered and not considered in their deliberations.


Environmental Health Trust also has a list of Key Policy Issues related to Exposure Guidelines here.


Exposure Limits for Radio frequency Energy: Three Models

Ken Foster, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

This article points out that different long term exposure limits in different countries are due to their different models of reasoning.

  • Heat: The U.S. uses science based studies but only those that examine heat based adverse effects. They do not take into account studies on non-thermal adverse effects.
  • Non-Thermal Effects:  Russia and China use science based studies on non-thermal effects.
  • Precautionary: Switzerland, Italy and many other countries use precautionary language for their long term exposure limits


“Thus, Russian (and Eastern European) limits clearly reflect the conviction that long-term (hours or more) exposures at levels far below Western limits result in adverse health effects. Indeed, the Russian and Eastern European medical literature contains many reports of health effects from low-level exposure to RF energy. These include, for example, nonspecific problems (such as headaches, fatigability, irritability, sleep disorders, and dizziness) in workers in radio factories, who are exposed to RF energy at undetermined levels11 12. The Chinese literature contains similar reports.13 The Russian literature contains references to a “microwave disease” characterized by “asthenic, asthenovegetatic, and hypothalamic syndromes”14 The disease is not recognized in Western medicine, and its diagnostic criteria would undoubtedly strike many Western physicians as vague and nonfalsifiable. Even some Eastern European physicians have complained about the nonspecificity of these criteria as well.15 16″

Russia Explains Protective Standards for EMR

Russian National Committee of Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection – 2008 report: This sobering report discusses the need for exposure guidelines that protect children and the general population from chronic levels of radio frequency radiation.


Russian National Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection and EMF RF standards. New conditions of EMF RF exposure and guarantee of the health to population.  Prof. Yu. Grigoriev,  Russian National Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection Federal Medical Biophysical Centre, FMBA, Moscow, Russia.



See Also 

Scientific References

Terrestrial Radiofrequency Levels: Natural versus Manmade 


Insect and Animal Studies on Exposure Duration and Power Limits



Human Exposures Scientific References: Ambient, Children, Skin


Ambient Environmental RF Exposures of Cell Towers, Wi Fi and Cell Phones

  • Real-world cell phone radiofrequency electromagnetic field exposures. (2019) Wall S et al. Environ Res. 2019 Apr;171:581-592.
  • High ambient radiofrequency radiation in Stockholm city, Sweden. (2019) Carlberg M et al. Oncology Letters. December 3, 2018. Pages: 1777-1783.    “The total mean level was 5,494 µW/m2 (median 3,346; range 36.6‑205,155). The major contributions were down links from LTE 800 (4G), GSM + UMTS 900 (3G), GSM 1800 (2G), UMTS 2100 (3G) and LTE 2600 (4G). Regarding different places, the highest RF radiation was measured at the Hay Market with a mean level of 10,728 µW/m2 (median 8,578; range 335‑68,815). This is a square used for shopping, and both retailers and visitors may spend considerable time at this place. Also, the Sergel Plaza had high radiation with a mean of 7,768 µW/m2. All measurements exceeded the target level of 30‑60 µW/m2 based on non‑thermal (no heating) effects, according to the BioInitiative Report.”


Children’s Exposures to RF


Skin and Body Absorption

Occupational Exposures






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