Wednesday, June 12, 2019

How Wireless RF and Microwaves Affect the World Around You

Jaime Jones, NuWaves Engineering, June 12, 2019

Radio wave applications have come a long way since it was first theorized by James Clark Maxwell in his 1873 work “A Treatise on Electricity and Magnetism”, where he laid out mathematical theories showing the potential applications of radio technology. Only fifteen years later, German Physicist Heinrich Hertz became the first person to produce, transmit, and receive electromagnetic waves. At the time, Hertz considered his discoveries to have no practical use, going as far as to say “It’s of no use whatsoever”. One hundred and thirty-one years later, we now know the profound advancement RF and Microwave designs have made across the globe; including some ways you might not have even thought about.

Today nearly all people are interconnected wirelessly, and this evolution has transformed nearly all aspects of our lives. Learning, teaching, communicating, entertainment, healthcare – every industry has been sculpted around wireless RF technologies. Today, all of human knowledge and history rests in the palm of our hands, transmitted via an internet connection from a satellite orbiting one hundred miles above our heads. The depth doesn’t stop there though – each individual satellite must communicate with one another as well as the main controller on the ground. None of this would be possible without the usage of radio wave technologies. Not all uses of wireless RF devices are as grand, though. Conservationists in Africa use radio telemetry to track endangered species in their vast habitats. Hospitals utilize wireless RF to track hundreds of patients’ vital signs at once to allow for faster reaction times when it’s most needed.

Our world has forever been shaped by the pioneering into radio frequencies of the scientists, inventors, and engineers that came before us.