Other microwave reactions

In pchem today, we briefly mentioned the electromagnetic spectrum. As one of those fun little “snapple facts” that my professor threw in todays lecture: the microwaves a standard microwave oven emits are ~2.45 GHz. I’ve never really thought about what frequency a microwave operates at, and as luck would have it, haven’t had such a problem ever as homework. It seems like such an obvious homework question, too…

But, regardless, my prof mentioned that microwaves operate at 2.45 GHz….

According to wikipedia, the concept of the microwave oven was patented in 1945. Between the 80s and 90s, the microwave oven saturated domestic America.

In the late 80s, the cordless phone came to pass, and by the late 90s, the technology seemed well within reach of average consumers. In 1998, the FCC allocated the frequency of 2.4 GHz for cordless phones. (And up until 2003, when they allocated 5.8 GHz, most new cordless phones were hawked with 2.4 GHz as a ‘feature.’)

Therefore, whenever I’m at home-home and have access to both a microwave and a landline/cordless phone, one conversation is usually comprised of unintelligible fuzz.

It’s rarely an issue for me, but considering that microwaves had been commonplace for longer than the cordless phone frequency range: what ‘tard over at the FCC allowed the overlap/interference to be a problem in the first place?
Just wondering…


2 Responses to Other microwave reactions

  1. Eric M says:

    It’s an international standard for short range services. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ISM_band

  2. chiraljones says:

    nifty! in my vast “crawling” of wikipedia I hadn’t come across that.

    bummer that we have such advanced technology and we’re out of places in the spectrum to put it. this is the future… i expect flying cars, microwaves, and cordless phones that will work together. flying car-microwave-phone even?

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