Answer to Question #7307 Submitted to "Ask the Experts"
The following question was answered by an expert in the appropriate field:
Please don't worry. Most satellite dishes receive weak signals; they do not generate high-intensity electromagnetic waves. This type of radiation is everywhere and placement of the dishes is intended to pick up as strong a signal as possible. There are also government standards to protect the public from these specific types of radiation.
Microwave radiation, the type received and emitted from radar, is also similar to the type used by cell phones. Its primary mode of biological interaction is heating, unlike ionizing radiation (x rays and radioactivity). Although microwave ovens use high amounts of microwave radiation, these ovens must have two safety interlocks to operate safely and protect the public, and the external emissions, like cell phones and radar emissions, are extremely low and very safe.
For additional information on radiofrequency (RF) radiation, I refer you to the Health Physics Society's Q and A section that addresses microwave radiation along with other electromagnetic radiations. Embedded in some of these answers are additional links to other Web sites with useful information.
In addition to these regulatory safety standards, there continues to be a lack of credible scientific evidence to show that such emissions pose a safety issue for the public. I personally don't consider them dangerous.
Orhan H Suleiman, MS, PhD