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1.  What is SAR?

Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) is the rate at which electromagnetic power radiated from mobile handsets and towers is absorbed by the human body.


 2.  What is a SAR value?

 SAR Value is a measure of the maximum energy absorbed by a unit of mass of exposed tissue of a person using a mobile phone, over a given time or more simply the power absorbed per unit mass. SAR values are usually expressed in units of watts per kilogram (W/kg) in either 1g or 10g of tissue.

Every mobile phone model is tested for radio wave emissions. Using an internationally standardized method that meets government and regulatory requirements, a measurement is made to determine how much electromagnetic energy is absorbed by body tissue. This gives the SAR (specific absorption rate) value.

Governmental and regulatory agencies have established SAR limits under which cell phone use has been determined by them to be safe.


 3.  What is SAR Limit in India?

 The Inter-Ministerial Committee on EMF Radiation set up by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology had suggested stricter SAR limits (2 watt per kg) for mobile handsets.

 While acknowledging the sensitivity of health related effects of radiation emissions from mobile towers and the recent concern raised by World Health Organization, the Indian Government has decided to set the new SAR limits to 1.6 watt per kg. This would make the Indian standards closer to the US standards prescribed by the FCC (Federal Communication Commission) where the permissible SAR levels are set at or below 1.6 watt  per kg taken over a volume containing a mass of 1 gram of tissue.


 4.  How is SAR harmful for Human Body?

 A high level of SAR is known to have ill effects on humans.


 5.  SAR For Cell Phones: What It Means For Me?

 There is considerable confusion and misunderstanding about the meaning of the maximum reported Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) values for cell phones (and other wireless devices). SAR is a measure of the rate of RF (radiofrequency) energy absorption by the body from the source being measured – in this case, a cell phone.

 Many people mistakenly assume that using a cell phone with a lower reported SAR value necessarily decreases a user’s exposure to RF emissions, or is somehow “safer” than using a cell phone with a high SAR value. While SAR values are an important tool in judging the maximum possible exposure to RF energy from a particular model of cell phone, a single SAR value does not provide sufficient information about the amount of RF exposure under typical usage conditions to reliably compare individual cell phone models.


6.  So how safe are mobile phones?

There is concern at the moment over the use of cellular phones and their possible health implications. All the research is inconclusive so the bottom line is, cellular phones may be a potential health hazard.

Different cell-phone models emit different amounts of radiation, so one way to reduce your exposure is to purchase a cell phone with a lower SAR (specific absorption rate), a number that indicates how much radiation is absorbed by the human body when the handset is being used at maximum power.

The FCC requires cell phone manufacturers to ensure that their phones comply with these objective limits for safe exposure. Any cell phone at or below these SAR levels (that is, any phone legally sold in India) is a "safe" phone, as measured by these standards. The FCC limit for public exposure from cellular telephones is an SAR level of 1.6 watts per kilogram (1.6 W/kg). 


7.  How could I Find the SAR value for my phone?

The SAR rating of each individual phone model is now being displayed on all mobile phone and on its packaging, which will enable users to make informed choices when purchasing a handset. Sarvalues.com brings this important information free of charge to all cellular users and also provides useful links to other Websites containing information.

The easiest way to ascertain SAR for many cellular phones is via the FCC's links to individual manufacturers' Web sites: http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/sar/ . On this page you will find links to most manufacturers' Web pages that include SAR information for their phones, along with instructions on how to search each site for SAR information.

Important user information: Features of phone models are sometimes revised or improved during production. This could lead to a situation where the same phone type appears to have different SAR values. If so, please refer to the user guide shipped with your phone to see the SAR value of your phone. 


8.  What are the Parameters that can affect SAR?

Parameters that can affect SAR include:

  • Types of radio service (cellular, PCS, LMR, WLAN, etc.)
  • Types of modulations (CDMA, GMSK, TDMA, AMPS, etc.)
  • Physical orientation to person (held-to-ear, held-to-face, belt-clip, lap-held, etc.)
  • RF power level (in Watts or mW)
  • Changes to transmitter, antenna (extracted/retracted) or accessories (clips, batteries, etc.)


9. How can I lower my Exposure to Cell Phone Radiation?

The following tips will help you protect yourself from cell phone radiation by enabling you to use your phone in ways that lower your radiation exposure.

  • Use a speakerphone, earpiece or headset to reduce proximity to the head (and thus exposure). While wired earpieces may conduct some energy to the head and wireless earpieces also emit a small amount of RF energy, both wired and wireless earpieces remove the greatest source of RF energy (the cell phone) from proximity to the head and thus can greatly reduce total exposure to the head.
  • Carry your cell phone away from your body—in a purse, briefcase or computer bag—not in your pocket where it is pressed up against you.
  • Increase the distance between wireless devices and your body.
  • Consider texting rather than talking - but don’t text while you are driving.