Occupational exposure to electromagnetic fields in the Polish Armed Forces
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Military Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Warszawa, Poland (Department of Microwave Safety)
Online publication date: 2017-04-28
Corresponding author
Jaromir Sobiech   

Military Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Department of Microwave Safety, Kozielska 4, 01-163 Warszawa, Poland
Int J Occup Med Environ Health. 2017;30(4):565–577
Objectives: Standard devices used by military personnel that may pose electromagnetic hazard include: radars, missile systems, radio navigation systems and radio transceivers. The aim of this study has been to evaluate the exposure of military personnel to electromagnetic fields. Material and Methods: Occupational exposure to electromagnetic fields was analyzed in the work environment of personnel of 204 devices divided into 5 groups (surface-to-air missile system radars, aircraft and helicopters, communication devices, surveillance and height finder radars, airport radars and radio navigation systems). Measurements were carried out at indicators, device terminals, radio panels, above vehicle seats, in vehicle hatches, by cabinets containing high power vacuum tubes and other transmitter components, by transmission lines, connectors, etc. Results: Portable radios emit the electric field strength between 20–80 V/m close to a human head. The manpack radio operator’s exposure is 60–120 V/m. Inside vehicles with high frequency/very high frequency (HF/VHF) band radios, the electric field strength is between 7–30 V/m and inside the radar cabin it ranges between 9–20 V/m. Most of the personnel on ships are not exposed to the electromagnetic field from their own radar systems but rather by accidental exposure from the radar systems of other ships. Operators of surface-to-air missile systems are exposed to the electric field strength between 7–15 V/m and the personnel of non-directional radio beacons – 100–150 V/m. Conclusions: In 57% of military devices Polish soldiers work in the occupational protection zones. In 35% of cases, soldiers work in intermediate and hazardous zones and in 22% – only in the intermediate zone. In 43% of devices, military personnel are not exposed to electromagnetic field. Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2017;30(4):565–577